Blue Demons Top Rutgers in Straight Sets
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ Sarah Cullen registered a career-high .393 clip in the DePaul volleyball team’s 3-0 (25-20, 25-16, 25-14) BIG EAST Conference victory over Rutgers, Friday at College Avenue Gym. The Blue Demons have won two of their last four matches and improve to 5-21 and 3-9 in league action, while the Scarlet Knights fall to 2-19 and 1-10 in conference play.
Cullen paced the Blue Demons with 13 kills, and Jacie Fiedler knocked down 10 to lead the team’s offensive attack. With DePaul swinging well, Christy Landschoot dished out 37 assists and chipped in four digs.
After the Blue Demons won the first point of the match on a kill from Cullen, the squad clammed up and allowed Rutgers to rally off seven unanswered points. With a six point deficit the Blue Demons went to work and tied the frame at 10 on a Scarlet Knight service error.
The two teams continued to trade points and with the first set knotted at 14, the Blue Demons strung together five unanswered points and took a 19-14 lead. DePaul sustained its five point advantage and took the first stanza 25-20. Cullen and Fiedler combined for nine of the Blue Demons 16 kills in the set.
The Blue Demons started the second stanza strong as Molly Creek served the first three points of the set. Rutgers would tie the frame at six and again at seven but the Blue Demons looked to Cullen, who put a ball away to give the team its final lead.
Following Cullen’s kill a the 8-7 mark, she went back to the service line and served the Blue Demons’ next three points. Rutgers pulled within one at the 12-11 mark, but DePaul answered with a 5-1 run to control the tempo and force a Scarlet Knight timeout.
Up 17-13, the Blue Demons closed out the stanza on an 8-3 run. During DePaul’s run, Landschoot served for five points, while Kate Letcher, Cullen and Creek all tallied kills in the final points.
The third set started like the previous two as the teams traded points early before the Blue Demons gained momentum and took flight. Tied at five, DePaul went on a 5-1 run which was fueled by kills from Creek, Letcher and Cullen. The Blue Demons continued to roll as they registered a .364 clip on 14 kills. Letcher paced the floor with four kills while Cullen, Fiedler and Creek each chipped in three. DePaul won the final set 25-14.
Cullen led the defense with 11 digs to registered her 18th double-double of the season. Cullen also added three total blocks, but it was Creek, who came up big at the net. The freshman tied her career-high with five block assists. The Blue Demons out blocked Rutgers 9-5.
Lauren Voss led Rutgers with nine kills, while Caitlin Saxton tallied a team-high 10 digs.
The Blue Demons return to the court on Tuesday, November 11 when they host Bradley at McGrath Arena. The nonconference match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.
Match Notes: The Blue Demons lead the overall series with Rutgers 3-2... Sarah Cullen has registered double-digit kills in the last 11 matches while she has finished 24 of DePaul’s 26 matches with double figure kills.... Molly Creek’s five kills was a season-high... Cullen’s three service aces tied a season-high.