FRIDAY, OCTOBER 01, 2010
Volleyball prevails in 3-2 slugfest with FGCU
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Senior outside hitter Aidan Yeager finished with 21 kills, a .426 (21-1-47) hitting percentage, six aces and three blocks to lead the JU volleyball team to a roller coaster 3-2 win (21, 25, 26-24, 18-25, 25-23, 18-16) over FGCU, Friday evening at Swisher Gymnasium.

JU (9-8, 1-0), which won its fourth straight match, only hit .193 in the contest but tallied 13 aces and seven blocks while founding a way to pull out tight sets in the second, fourth and fifth.

FGCU (3-12, 0-1) tallied a .216 hitting percentage and used a match-high 78 digs to frustrate the Dolphin offense but could not find a way to finish the match.

“This was a match up against two very young teams,” said JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg. “Things looked a little shaky until Aidan took over in the final two sets. Kylie Jacob also did a tremendous job in only a set and a half off the bench. It feels good to start out conference play with a win but we could very easily be talking about a tough loss tonight.”

Along with Yeager, senior outside hitter Brittany Lehman finished with 11 kills, five digs and two aces. Freshman middle blocker Kylie Jacob provided a spark in the final two sets to tally six kills, a .600 (6-0-10) hitting percentage and a match-high four blocks. Junior outside hitter Kathryn Kane added 11 digs while freshman setter Kendall Courtney chipped in with 50 assists, seven digs and two kills. Junior libero Ashley August led the defense with 14 digs.

Brittany Muse led the Eagles with a match-high 23 kills and nine digs while Chelsea Lyles added 14 kills, a match-high .462 hitting percentage, five digs and two blocks. Adrianne McNally (14 digs, 10 kills) and Camil Dominguez (52 assists, 11 digs) each finished with double-doubles while Jessica Barnes added 11 kills and Caitlin Shawver finished with 10 digs. Holly Youngquist led the defense with a match-high 20 digs.

In the first set, both teams battled through four ties until the Eagles used a 5-1 run to take a 10-6 advantage on an attack error by the Dolphins. JU would cut the margin to 14-13 with a block by sophomore middle blocker Alison Loeppky and Kane but FGCU answered back with 4-1 run to take an 18-14 lead. The Eagles increased the margin to 21-15 after another attack error by JU but the Dolphins would pull to within 23-21 after an attack error by McNally. The Eagles would end the set with a 2-0 run to take a 1-0 lead in the match.

In the second frame, FGCU jumped out to an early 6-2 lead on a kill by Jessica Barnes but the Dolphins would battle back to tie the score (15-15) with an ace by Yeager. Both teams would go through seven more ties (the last coming at 24-24) until an attack error by Lyles and a kill by Lehman evened the match, 1-1, heading into the break.

In the third set, FGCU opened up an early 4-1 lead on a kill by Lyles but the Dolphins would even the score (5-5) after an attack error by McNally. Both teams would go through two more ties until the Eagles used a 5-1 run, capped by an attack error by the Dolphins, to open up a 13-9 advantage. The Dolphins would cut the deficit to 13-12 with an ace by sophomore outside hitter Alliya Drzewiecki but the Eagles would answer with an 8-1 run, capped by a kill by Lyles, to take a 21-13 lead. Both teams would trade points the rest of the way until a kill by Barnes gave FGCU a 2-1 lead in the match.

In the fourth frame, JU took an early 5-0 lead after an attack error by Muse and then increased the margin to 9-3 with a kill by Jacob. The Eagles would answer back to even the score (13-13) with a kill by Jacqueline Cowden and both teams would go through four more ties until the Eagles used a 2-0 run to take a 19-17 advantage. JU battled back to tie the score (21-21) after an attack error by McNally and both teams would go through two more ties (the last coming at 23-23) until the Dolphins got back-to-back kills by Yeager to even the match, 2-2.

In the final frame, the Eagles took an early 4-1 lead on a service error by the Dolphins but JU would use a 3-1 run to cut the margin to 5-4 with a kill by Jacob. FGCU answered with a 3-0 run, capped by a kill by Lyles, to open up an 8-4 advantage at the half-way point but the Dolphins would scratch their way back to a tie (13-13) after an attack error by Cowden. Both teams would go through three more ties (the last coming at 16-16) until an attack error by Muse and a kill by Lehman would give JU the match.

The Dolphins will end the weekend by hosting Stetson at Swisher Gymnasium on Saturday at 5 p.m. The contest will not be available on ASun.TV due to football’s game against San Diego.