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Oral Roberts Hosts NDSU in Clash for Summit Lead

Courtesy: ORU Media Relations
          Release: 11/01/2011
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TULSA, Okla. - With a rough weekend in the rearview mirror, Oral Roberts University has a chance to reclaim the top spot in the Summit League on Thursday night when they host North Dakota State University. First serve is scheduled for 7 pm CT at the Kenneth H. Cooper Aerobics Center.

The Golden Eagles (19-6, 12-3 Summit League) spent nearly a month at the top of the Summit League standings before going 0-2 on their final road trip of October. On Oct. 28, ORU fell to Oakland, 3-0 (25-22, 25-23, 25-22), and a day later they were taken down by IPFW, 3-1 (25-16, 25-21, 23-25, 25-18). The losses snapped ORU’s 12-match winning streak and their nine-match road winning streak.

ORU did clinch a berth in the Summit League Tournament over the weekend, their first postseason bid since 2008. The event begins on Nov. 18 in Fort Wayne, Ind.

Despite the losses, ORU remained in the top-70 of this week’s NCAA Division I RPI rankings. The Golden Eagles are at No. 67 this week, six spots down from last week and 21 spots behind North Dakota State, the highest-ranked Summit League team.

NDSU (20-8, 12-2 Summit League) last played on Oct. 29, when they swept future Summit League member Nebraska-Omaha. Junior Megan Lambertson, whose .411 hitting percentage ranks 6th nationally, had eight kills in the victory.

ORU defeated the Bison, 3-2, in an epic contest on Oct. 8 in Fargo, N.D. The Golden Eagles were down two sets to one and 18-12 in the fourth set before rallying to win 15 of the next 22 points. After forcing a deciding fifth set, ORU scored a 15-9 victory to escape Fargo with the win.

Olivia Ophus led ORU with 15 kills in the victory, while Bruna Silva racked up a career-high 41 digs.

The win snapped an eight-match and 13-set losing streak to NDSU. The Bison are 9-4 all-time against Oral Roberts.

Following the NDSU match, Oral Roberts has a day off before hosting South Dakota State in their final home match of the 2011 season. The Tulsa finale is scheduled to start at 7 pm.
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