Volleyball falls to Georgia, 3-0, in home opener

Aug. 30, 2007

Box Score

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Freshman outside hitter Brittany Lehman led the Dolphins with a team-high 14 kills and freshman setter Hannah Munneke tallied another double-double but the JU volleyball team fell to Georgia, 3-0 (20-30, 21-30, 27-30), Thursday evening in the 2007 home opener at Swisher Gymnasium.

JU (0-4) struck the ball well with a .207 hitting percentage for the game but UGA (4-0) was a blistering .347 for the contest. The Bulldogs also increased their program record with four consecutive matches without losing a game.

"We are still struggling with consistency but when we play well, we play well," said JU head coach Shaun Kupferberg. "Our offense did a much better job tonight but, unfortunately, our defense was not as good as it was last weekend. Hopefully, this weekend we get things back together."

Lehman, who was named Orange and Green Challenge all-tournament last weekend, once again led the Dolphin offense with 14 kills and a .273 hitting percentage (14-5-33). Munneke, who has registered a double-double in every contest this season, finished with 33 assists and 11 digs.

Freshman outside hitter Aidan Yeager (11) and junior outside hitter Sara Bendorf (10) also registered double figure kills for the Dolphins. Sophomore libero Michelle Walroth had 11 digs and senior middle hitter Melissa Merchant chipped in with six blocks to also help the JU defense.

Maria Taylor led the Bulldogs with a match-high 19 kills while hitting .455 from the floor (19-4-33). Britta Buethe had a double-double with 12 kills and 10 digs while Lindsay Gehan had 10 kills and a match-high .529 hitting percentage (10-1-17). Mara Martin dished out 43 assists to help the UGA effort.

In game one, JU jumped out to an early 4-1 lead but UGA tied the game at 11-11 before using a 4-0 run to lead 15-11. After a pair of mini-runs, the Bulldogs increased the advantage to 21-15 on a kill by Buethe. UGA ended the game with 5-0 run to seal the frame and finish with a match-high .500 hitting percentage (19-4-30).

In the second game, the Bulldogs jumped out to a 4-0 lead but both teams traded points until JU used a 4-0 run to cut the margin to 16-15. UGA answered with a 9-2 run to make it 25-17 on a kill by Clark. JU would get no closer than six points for the remainder of the game.

In the final game, the Dolphins jumped out to a 6-1 lead until the Bulldogs answered with a 9-3 run to take a 10-9 advantage on an ace by Clark. JU battled back to take a 14-13 lead after an ace my Munneke but both teams would trade points for the next several serves. After going through 14 ties and three lead changes, UGA ended the game with a 3-0 run to win the match.

JU will next play The Citadel at 7 p.m. for the final match of first day of The Loop Pizza Grill Invitational at Swisher Gymnasium. Georgia and Presbyterian will open the day at 1 p.m. for a non-tournament contest before Presbyterian faces Providence to open the tournament at 5 p.m.