NASHVILLE, TN - Twenty-fourth-ranked Arizona volleyball split the action on Day 1 of the 2017 season.
In a pair of matches vs. respective preseason conference favorites, the Cats defeated East Tennessee State (24-26, 25-19, 25-23, 25-20) before falling to host Lipscomb (13-25, 29-31, 25-20, 22-25).
UA wraps up the LUV (Lipscomb University Volleyball) Invitational on Sunday at 10 a.m. MST vs. Middle Tennessee.
While breaking in a host of newcomers, it was the Wildcat veterans that did the heavy lifting for UA. Junior outside hitter Kendra Dahlke, who finished fourth in the Pac-12 in kills a season ago, led all players with 17 kills on .227 hitting.
In her first start, taking over for 2016 Pac-12 Setter of the Year Penina Snuka, UA's top all-time digging setter, sophomore Julia Patterson did her best Snuka impression. Patterson led the team with 16 digs to go along with 40 assists, good for her first career double-double.
In the night cap Arizona had no answer for Carlyle Nusbaum, the preseason ASUN Player of the Year, who finished with 25 kills on 46 swings (.413 hitting) and added an ace, two blocks and eight digs.
It was Bisons' first-ever win on their home court over a ranked opponent.
You can read more about the season-opening doubleheader over at ArizonaWildcats.com.