COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho — Mariah Moulton had a match-high 13 kills, but it was not enough to help the Blue Mountain Timberwolves from falling in three to their North Idaho hosts on Wednesday.
The Timberwolves dropped the match 25-17, 25-16, and 25-13 to the Northwest Athletic Conference East Region’s top-ranked Cardinals, marking their second straight league loss following last Friday’s 3-1 defeat at Walla Walla.
A kill by the Cardinals’ Kameryn Reynolds and three consecutive Blue Mountain errors helped North Idaho out to a 4-0 start in the opening minutes of the first set. A pair of North Idaho kills and two Blue Mountain errors soon helped the Cardinals to an eight point lead, from which the Timberwolves never recovered for the remainder of the set.
An unforced error gave the Timberwolves their first of few advantages of the night at 1-0 to open set two, but the Cardinals would eventually take a 10-point, 17-7 advantage, bolstered by two Blue Mountain attack errors and three North Idaho aces.
Abigail Ives assisted Moulton for a kill that brought the Timberwolves within three points of the Cardinals at 18-15, but it was the closest North Idaho would allow, capping off the second set with a four-point rally.
Moulton notched two unanswered kills that gave the Blue Mountain a short lived 2-1 advantage in the night’s third and final contest, but the Cardinals strung together four brief rallies that pushed them out front kept them well ahead.
Ives had a team-high 23 assists for the Timberwolves (6-14, 1-4 NWAC). The No. 1 Cardinals (17-3, 6-0 NWAC) were led by Hannah McPhetridge with nine kills, and Hokulea Vargas with 33 assists.
Blue Mountain will host Yakima Valley on Friday. Game time is at 6 p.m.