When the Omaha Mavericks faced off against the Denver Pioneers at Denver University on Nov. 15, much was at stake.
With only two matches remaining for either team in the regular season, Summit League tournament positions were up for grabs for both teams.
The Pioneers came into this match two spots above the Mavericks in the Summit League standings, as Omaha sat in fourth while the Pioneers were second. While Omaha stood little chance of catching up to Denver, the Mavericks would have chance of grabbing the three seed for the conference tournament, as they remained right behind Purdue Fort Wayne.
In the previous meeting between the two teams this season, Omaha kept it close to Denver, as the Pioneers won a narrow five set match in Omaha. This fact gave the Mavericks confidence as they sought revenge against the Pioneers.
Instead though, the Pioneers put on a remarkable performance on their Senior Day, as they swept the Mavericks in a quick three-set game.
Behind the support of sizable contingent of Maverick fans, made up of members of the Maverick Maniacs and the Omaha men’s soccer team, Omaha battled hard in each set, losing out 28-26, 25-19 and 25-20.
It was the size and power of the Pioneers at the front of the net that caused the Mavericks trouble. Denver’s Brianna Green led all players with seven blocks on the night, while fellow Pioneer Amanda Green was right behind her with four. Omaha on the other hand was led by sophomore Alexa Blasé and freshman Rachel Fairbanks, who only had three blocks a piece.
One of the players to really make a difference for the Mavericks that night was sophomore Sadie Limback, who led Omaha with 11 total kills, which continued her excellent 15-game long streak of reaching kills in the double digits.
The loss to the Pioneers continued an unlucky streak for the Mavericks, as they have now lost their last matches against Denver. The last time an Omaha team came out on top against Denver was back in 2015 at the Sapp Fieldhouse, as the Mavericks swept the Pioneers 3-0.
As well as continuing their unlucky streak, the loss also all-but secured a fourth-place finish in Summit League play. With one game left to go in the regular season, the Mavericks are two games behind Purdue Fort Wayne. Meanwhile the team below, North Dakota State, is two points behind the Mavericks.
At the time of print, the Mavericks will have played their last game of the regular season on Nov. 17 against South Dakota State. The next stop for the Mavericks will be to travel back to Denver to participate in the Summit League Conference tournament from Nov. 22 to Nov. 24.