FRIDAY, AUGUST 28, 2009
Volleyball falls to UCF, 3-1, in first day of Radisson-UCF Invitational
Senior libero Shelley Walroth
Senior libero Shelley Walroth
Senior libero Shelley Walroth tallied a match-high 28 digs but the JU volleyball team could not follow up on its fast start as the Dolphins fell to UCF, 3-1, Friday afternoon in the first day of the Radisson-UCF Invitational at the The Venue at UCF.

JU (0-1) took an early 1-0 advantage in the match with a 25-21 win in the first set but UCF (1-0) started to warm up offensively as the Knights hit over .200 as a team in two of the next three sets while the Dolphins hit below .100 in two of the final three frames.

“We had a decent match defensively but our offense hasn’t come around yet,” said JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg. “There is nothing to worry about yet, but I expect to see improvement tomorrow.”

Walroth, who holds the individual and career dig records at JU, is now 71 digs shy of surpassing Ann Mullins of Lipscomb for the Atlantic Sun Conference all-time record.

Junior outside hitter Aidan Yeager led the Dolphins offensively with 10 kills while also adding a match-high six blocks. Junior setter Hannah Munneke added a double-double with 14 assists and 11 digs. Sophomore setter Ashley August paced the offense with 21 assists while senior outside hitter Brooke Singleton added 13 digs. Junior middle blocker Brittany Lehman added six blocks and three service aces while freshman outside hitter Alliya Drzewiecki finished with eight kills and seven digs in her first collegiate match.

Kristin Fisher led the Knights with a match-high 16 kills while Andee Youngblood tallied a double-double with 45 assists and 10 digs. Meredith Murphy led the defense with 25 digs while Evija Vilde added 10 kills and four blocks.

In the first set, both teams traded points until the Dolphins used a 5-0 run, which was capped by a block assist by Lehman and Yeager, to take a 7-2 lead. JU increased the margin to 9-3 with a block assist by Lehman and Singleton but the Knights would use a 3-0 run to cut the deficit to 9-6. JU answered with a 2-0 run, capped with a kill by Drzewiecki, to push the advantage to 11-6. The Dolphins made it 13-7 with an ace by Lehman before increasing the lead to 18-11 with a kill by Singleton. JU pushed the margin to 21-12 with another kill by Singleton but UCF used a 10-2 run to cut the deficit to 23-22. The Dolphins answered with back-to-back kills by Drzewiecki and senior middle blocker Nicki Kent to take a 1-0 lead.

In the second frame, both teams went toe-to-toe through 14 ties and neither team holding larger than a two-point advantage until UCF used a 2-0 run to take a 22-19 lead on a kill by Fisher. JU cut the margin to 23-21 with a kill by Munneke but the Knights answered with back-to-back kills by Vilde and Fisher to even the match, 1-1.

In the third set, both teams went through four ties until UCF used a 4-0, capped by an attack error by the Dolphins, to open up an 8-4 lead. JU answered back with a 5-0 run, fueled by three-consecutive attack errors by the Knights, to take a 9-8 advantage. After three more ties, UCF used a 3-0 run to take a 14-11 lead on a kill by Fisher. The Knights increased the lead to 17-12 after a ball handling error by JU before pushing the advantage to 19-13 with a block assist by Nichole Riedel and Fisher. JU cut the margin to 19-15 with a kill by Yeager but the Knights answered with a 4-0 run, capped by a kill by Riedel, to push the lead to 23-15. UCF took a 2-1 advantage in the match after ending the frame with kills by Riedel and Erin Campbell.

In the fourth frame, the Knights controlled things from the start by jumping out to a commanding 8-0 lead. UCF increased the margin to 10-1 with a kill by Campbell but the Dolphins would use a 7-0 run to cut the deficit to 10-8 with a kill by Yeager. The Knights answered with a 4-0 run, capped by an ace by Fisher, to make it 14-8 before increasing the lead to 17-9 with a kill by Youngblood. UCF made it 19-10 after an attack error by the Dolphins but JU used a 3-0 run to cut the deficit to 19-13 with a block by Kent. Both teams would trade points the rest of the way until a kill by Riedel gave the Knights a 3-1 win.

JU will continue play in the Radisson-UCF Invitational on Saturday beginning with Bethune-Cookman at 11 a.m.