DePaul Sweeps to Ninth Straight Win at The Citadel, Ties Program Record
Sept. 14, 2013
CHARLESTON, S.C. - DePaul volleyball made history, tying a program record from 2001 with its ninth straight win to start the year on Saturday when the Blue Demons defeated The Citadel, 3-0 (25-15, 25-17, 26-24), in their final match of the weekend at the McAlister Fieldhouse.
Moving to 9-0 overall with a sixth sweep, the Blue Demons clinched a tournament championship and their best start since 2001 with the win. Winners of 11 straight going back to 2012, DePaul also tied its second-longest winning streak in program history from 1991 -- the program record stands at 16 straight wins, set by the 1978 squad.
The Citadel dropped to 1-8 overall with the setback as DePaul held the Bulldogs to a .041 hitting percentage for the match.
DePaul's attack was led by sophomore Abbie Fleener (season-high 13 kills) and senior Laura Witt (career-high 10 kills), who had the first triple-double for the Blue Demons since at least 2005 with an additional 27 assists and 15 digs.
In the first set, DePaul ran away with a 25-15 victory behind four kills from Fleener, Zapryanova and Witt. The Blue Demons hit .429 (15-3-28) and sealed the point, after leading 19-13, when Rooks nailed back-to-back aces during a 4-0 run.
Fleener was dominant in the second frame, leading DePaul to a 25-17 win with eight kills (against one error) on 14 attempts for a .500 hitting percentage. After nailing the first three points of the set, Fleener also added the last kill to put the Blue Demons up 2-0 in the match.
Looking for the sweep, DePaul would have a bit steeper of a challenge in set three -- which featured eight ties and four lead changes. Witt, Zapryanova and senior Natalie Rizzo each contributed four kills in the frame, as the Blue Demons squeaked out a 26-24 decision to clinch the match. Tied at 24 late, sophomore Callie Huebener landed a kill and a Rizzo ace sealed the win for DePaul.
Next up for the Blue Demons will be their final weekend tournament of the season, the SIUE Cougar Invitational in Edwardsville, Ill. DePaul will face SIUE to open the tourney on Friday, Sept. 20 at 7:00 p.m. CT and will wrap up the competition on Saturday against Georgia State at 10:00 a.m. CT and Arkansas Pine-Bluff at 4:30 p.m. CT.
Match Notes: DePaul matches a program record from 2001 with its ninth straight win to start the season... the team's 11-match winning streak dating to 2012 matches the second-longest winning streak in program history from the 1991 season... Fleener had a season-high 13 kills... Witt had the Blue Demons first triple-double since at least 2005 with a career-high 10 kills, 27 assists and 15 digs... Rooks had a season-high three aces...