Belles Open Season with Two Wins

CHICAGO, Ill. - The Saint Mary's volleyball team opened up the 2012 season with a 3-0 (25-9, 25-20, 25-22) victory over IU Northwest and a 3-1 (26-24, 24-26, 25-20, 26-24) win against Howard Payne at the North Park Classic on Friday evening.

In the Belles' straight-set victory over the RedHawks, Kati Schneider led the offense with nine kills while Brooke Fowler and Katie Hecklinski both added six kills for Saint Mary's. Fowler also added six digs while Hecklinski chipped in nine digs of her own. Abby White had 35 assists in her collegiate debut. Samantha Grady led the team with 19 digs in the 3-0 win.

Against the Yellow Jackets, Hecklinski had a big performance with 19 kills, 11 digs, and a pair of blocks. Schneider added a double-double of her own with 14 kills and 14 digs to go along with two aces and a block. Melanie Kuczek chimed in with nine kills and 10 digs with a pair of aces. White had another 30+ assist performance with 32 helpers to go along with 10 digs and a block.

The 2-0 start is the first time since the 2008 season that the Belles have opened the year with a pair of wins.

Saint Mary's takes on the host North Park Vikings and Kenyon in day two of the 2012 North Park Classic tomorrow.