Nov. 4, 2005
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - On Friday night, the Jacksonville volleyball team lost its identity.
The defending Atlantic Sun Conference champions somehow found it in time to rally from a 2-1 deficit to top Belmont, 3-2, in a key A-Sun match at Swisher Gymansium.
Lindsay Ward and Eva Stoilova both had double-doubles to lead the Dolphins (12-13, 7-1 A-Sun) comeback. Stoilova had 15 kills and a match-high 22 digs while Ward had 16 kills and 11 digs with five blocks. Setter Erin Donivan dished out 51 assists as well.
With the win, the Dolphins assured themselves of the No. 2 in the upcoming A-Sun Tournament and a first round bye. JU also pulled within one game of .500 after starting the season 1-9.
"I'm really proud of how hard we played tonight, especially in the last two games," said JU head coach Kevin Paul. "Now, we have to get some rest and come back ready to play against Lipscomb tomorrow."
Game one was topsy-turvy affair, with both teams having the lead at various times during the game. With JU leading late in the game Belmont battled back, fighting off four game points, but the Dolphins were not to be denied, claiming the early lead outlasting the Bruins, 34-32.
The game was a battle of attrition, as JU only had 13 kills while forcing Belmont into 12 attack errors.
Game two was all Belmont as the Bruins evened the match with a 30-13 win. The Bruins racked up 19 kills and hit .486 for the game while JU's offense went awry, getting only seven kills and hitting .133.
The Bruins (19-13, 6-2 A-Sun) kept the momentum going in game three, racking up 16 kills and hitting .234 to take the game 30-24. JU had its chances, getting 16 kills and hitting .204, but couldn't take advantage of its chances.
Jacksonville took advantage of its opportunities in game four, forcing a final game with a 30-27 win. The Dolphins hit .314 for the game and had 14 kills, but the defense forced Belmont into eight hitting errors while giving up 19 kills.
The final game started slow, but JU took control late to pull away. With the Dolphins leading 9-8, Jacksonville outscored Belmont 6-1 the rest of the way to take the win.
JU's offense shined again, getting seven kills and hitting .333 for the game while Belmont was held to just six kills and hit only .158 for the game.
Belmont had five players finish the match in double figures in kills and four in digs, with three double-double performances. Jaye Schuler led the Bruins with 21 kills, with Ashley Collier picking up 21 digs. Collen Nilson dished out 62 assists and picked up 18 digs, while Lindsay Cleveland had 18 kills and 10 digs and Erin Janson had 14 kills and 13 digs in the loss.
Jacksonville returns to the court on Saturday to face A-Sun rival Lipscomb at 7:30 p.m.