Semifinal, Dec. 9: UNLV vs. UTEP
UNLV 3, UTEP 1 (15-25, 25-21, 25-18, 25-17)
EL PASO, TX — UNLV stayed strong in the face of more than 2,000 UTEP fans and endured a first set where the Miners hit better than .500, coming back to win three straight sets and secure the victory in the first semifinal of the 2021 NIVC.
The Rebels (27-9) will face either UConn or Valparaiso in the championship match, with time and location still to be determined. UNLV also reached the NIVC semis in 2018.
UTEP (24-9) hit .538 in the first set, with two key aces from Serena Patterson helping to finish off the set. The Rebels hit .464 to even the match, 1-1.
Mariena Hayden had 14 kills for UNLV; Chloe Thomas and Gabrielle Arretche-Ramos each added seven kills, Lauryn Burt delivered 21 assists and Shelby Capllonch had 16 digs.
For UTEP, Patterson closed with 18 kills and three aces, and Paulina Perez Rosas had 11 kills. Ryley Frye and Kristen Fritsche each dished out 20 assists and Alyssa Sianez had 19 digs.