Volleyball drops final two matches at the Smoothie King Invitational

Sept. 9, 2006

Box Score

TAMPA, Fla. - The Jacksonville volleyball team dropped its final two matches at the Smoothie King Invitational on Saturday, falling to Texas Tech and Wright State.

The Dolphins (4-5) opened the day with a 3-0 loss to Texas Tech as the offense struggled, committing 30 attack errors in the match. In the final match against Wright State, JU showed signs of life on offense, but struggled on defense - giving up 74 kills in a 3-1 loss.

"This wasn't how we planned the weekend to go," said JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg. "We're going to learn a lot from these matches and get better from this. We're going to be back at work on Monday and focus on getting better."

In the opener against Texas Tech, JU got off to rocky start, losing the first game 30-16. JU finished the game with just seven kills and had a -.129 hitting percentage, allowing the Red Raiders to roll.

The offense seemed to get back on track in games two or three, but the Dolphins couldn't put away either game, falling 30-26 and 30-27. JU's defense was solid, getting seven blocks in the match, but offensively the Dolphins made 19 errors in the final two games.

The Red Raiders (6-2) finished the match with 17 blocks and nine service aces. No Red Raider finished the match in double figures in kills. JU was led by Stevenique Richardson's eight. Sara Bendorf had a team-high 10 digs.

The matchup against Wright State turned into an offensive shootout. WSU took game one, 31-29, behind 22 kills and a .232 hitting percentage.

In game two, the Dolphins bounced back with a 31-29 win. JU limited Wright State to just 13 kills while recording 15 of their own to pick up the win.

The final two games were all Wright State as they picked up a 30-26 win in game three and a 30-16 win in game four. Despite racking up 10 blocks in the match, led by Melissa Merchant's seven, the Dolphins allowed 39 kills while only getting 25 in the final two games.

Alisha Kimbro had 19 kills to lead three players in double figures from Wright State. Sara Bendorf had 11 kills and 13 digs to lead JU while Katie Hendrian had 10 kills as well. Shelley Walroth had a match-high 28 digs while Amanda Youell dished out 30 assists and had 14 digs.

The Dolphins are back in action next weekend at the University of Miami Invitational, starting on Friday.