TUESDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2013
Attack of the Dolphins
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – No. 1 Jacksonville volleyball earned revenge Tuesday night at Swisher by sweeping No. 4 Stetson, 3-0, after having lost in five sets to the Hatters on Sept. 21. JU won 25-16, 25-21 and 25-17.
The Dolphins improve to 19-2 overall, 9-1 in the Atlantic Sun and a perfect 9-0 at Swisher.
“We knew they were a team that was playing hot, they’ve been playing well this year, and so our focus was just to take it as another game, try to do our best, and compete out there and I think that’s what we’re doing,” Head Coach Michelle Collier said.
Offensively, Jacksonville recorded nine service aces on the night; Taylor Nyquist led with four, Rachel Miller and Sammie Strausbaugh each made two and Kendall Courtney had one. Strausbaugh led in kills (12), while Gabriela Roman was second with 11, although Stetson’s Kaley Melville totaled a match-high 13 kills. Courtney posted a match-high .667 attack percentage finishing 4-for-6, while Alyssa Robertson hit.600 (7-for-10).
Defensively, Miller led with 14 digs, while Nyquist (8) and Roman (7) rounded out the top three. Robertson led a match-high in block assists (3), followed by both Kylie Jacob and Courtney with two apiece.
Jacksonville hit 47 percent in the first set, compared to Stetson’s 20 percent. The Dolphins held a 7-4 advantage after three straight points on two attack errors and a service ace. Stetson came close, down 11-10, but JU pulled ahead from 12-10 to 14-10 on three kills and from 15-11 to 17-11 on three kills. JU followed to win the first set 25-16 after scoring five straight on one service error, two kills and two attack errors.
JU opened the second game 4-2 before Stetson roared back to a 9-5 lead on four attack errors, two service aces and one kill. Down 17-11, JU rallied within two on a Roman kill and three consecutive Nyquist service aces. JU stretched from 19-20 to a 23-20 lead on four kills and one service ace and eventually took the second game 25-21.
The Dolphins continued their fierce momentum in the final set, hitting to a 4-0 upper hand on two kills, a bad set and a service ace. Stetson scored within four, down 14-10, but separated by as much as nine at 24-15. Strausbaugh killed the final point for a 25-17 match win.
“Every match is important and so I think we’re taking one match at a time and we’re really focused on this one and felt like we could get them in trouble with our serving,” Collier said. “We executed on the offensive side and I’m really happy with how we played.”
Jacksonville hits the road this weekend, playing at Northern Kentucky on Friday at 6 p.m. and at Lipscomb on Saturday at 2 p.m.