Volleyball defeats Florida Atlantic, 3-0, to end Radisson-UCF Invitational
Senior libero Shelley Walroth
Senior libero Shelley Walroth
Junior outside hitter Aiden Yeager notched a match-high 12 kills to lead the JU volleyball team to a 3-0 (25-15, 25-17, 25-20) win over Florida Atlantic, Saturday evening to place third in the Radisson-UCF Invitational at the The Venue at UCF.

JU (2-1) continued its offensive nature on the final day of the event by hitting over .200 in all three sets, including a match-high .378 in set two. FAU (0-4) started off slow with a -.094 in the first set and could not recover from 10 receiving errors in the contest.

“It was nice to see us finish strong this weekend but we still have things to iron out,” said JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg. “We are going to regroup this week and learn from our mistakes as we head into our final non-conference tournament.”

Along with the third place finish, senior libero Shelley Walroth and Yeager each received all-tournament honors.

Walroth, who finished with a match-high 15 digs in another short match, is now 44 digs shy of surpassing Ann Mullins of Lipscomb for the Atlantic Sun Conference all-time record.

Yeager led the Dolphins offensively with 15 kills while notching a .417 hitting percentage. Senior outside hitter Brooke Singleton added nine kills and eight digs while sophomore setter Ashley August paced the offense with 17 assists.

Anne Vaughan led the Owls with a match-high 15 kills while Nicole Gerig added 25 assists and nine digs. Georgia Robinson chipped in with 10 digs, five kills and two blocks.

In the first set, JU jumped out to a 4-1 lead on a kill by senior middle blocker Nicki Kent and the Dolphins pushed the advantage to 6-2 with a kill by Singleton. The Owls would close the gap to 8-6 on a kill by Gerig but JU answered with a 5-2 run, capped by an ace by freshman outside hitter Alliya Drzewiecki, to push the lead to 13-8. JU made it 15-9 with a kill by Yeager and a 5-0 run by the Dolphins increased the margin to 20-11 after an attack error by the Owls. Both teams would trade points the rest of the way before a ball handling error by FAU gave JU a 1-0 lead in the match.

In the second frame, both teams played through three ties until JU used a 5-0 run to open a 9-4 lead on a kill by Singleton. The Dolphins made it 12-6 on a kill by Drzewiecki and would push the advantage to 15-8 with an ace by August. JU made it 17-9 with a kill by Yeager but a 4-0 run by the Owls cut the margin to 17-13 with a kill by Vaughan. The Dolphins would answer with a 6-1 run, capped by a kill by Drzewiecki, to push the lead to 23-14. The Dolphins would take a 2-0 lead in the match when sophomore outside hitter Kathryn Kane ended the set with a kill.

In the third set, both teams went through four ties until JU used a 6-1 run to open up a 13-8 lead on an attack error by the Owls. FAU would answer with a 4-0 run, capped by a kill by Vaughan, to cut the margin to 13-12. The Dolphins would answer right back with a 5-1 run, capped by a kill by Yeager, to push the lead to 18-13. FAU would also answer back with a 5-0 run to even the score, 18-18, with a kill by Vaughan and both teams would trade a point to endure another tie (19-19). JU would rattle off a 6-1 run to end the set, capped with an ace by junior middle blocker Brittany Lehman, to seal the match.

JU will return to action next weekend as the Dolphins open the Southern Miss Tournament against Louisiana Tech on Friday, Sept. 4 at 3:30 p.m.