Louisville Tops DePaul
CHICAGO The DePaul volleyball team dropped a 3-0 (30-8, 30-18, 31-29) BIG EAST Conference match to No. 17 Louisville, Friday at McGrath Arena. The Cardinals improve 20-4 and sit at the top of the league standings with a perfect 13-0 record while the Blue Demons fall to 7-20 and 2-11 in conference action.
Overcoming a slow start, the Blue Demons gave the Cardinals all they could handle in the third game as there were 11 tie scores and four lead changes. Knotted at four in the set, the Blue Demons went on a 5-1 run and took their largest lead of the match on a Cardinal attack error. The two teams continued to battle, but Louisville used a Blue Demon attack error to tie the game at 14 and forced DePaul to use its first timeout.
Following the timeout, Blue Demon outside hitter Sarah Cullen smashed a kill to the back court and Jacie Fiedler tacked on a service ace to give DePaul a 16-14 advantage. The Cardinals quickly answered with a mini 5-3 run and used a kill by Samantha Dabbs to take a 20-18 lead.
The game was knotted at 23, 26 and 28 before the Blue Demons seized a 29-28 lead on Kate Letcher's service ace. Louisville bounced back with three unanswered points and earned game and match victory on Jana Matiasovska's kill.
The Blue Demons hit a stellar .224 in the third game behind Fiedler's five kills and .500 attack percentage. However, Louisville knocked down a match-high 20 kills for a .269 percentage. Jana Kolesnikova and Dabbs each tallied five kills in the final set for the Cardinals.
Louisville controlled the first two games with unbelievable attack percentages. The Cardinals notched 17 kills for a .607 attack percentage in game one and followed that performance with 19 kills for a .400 percentage in the second set. Conversely, the Blue Demons were unable to find any rhythm and hit a combined .037 hitting percentage in games one and two. Louisville won game one 30-8 and game two 30-18.
Fiedler paced the Blue Demons offensively with nine kills during the match and Charla Drabant followed with eight. Cullen led DePaul's defensive effort with 10 digs.
The Cardinals finished the match with a .391 attack percentage and 56 kills. Kolesnikova led all players with 11 kills and Dabbs added 10 for a match-high .600 attack percentage. Cardinal libero Lindsey Mango paced the defense with 19 digs while Kristie Wetterer chipped in 13.
The Blue Demons close out the regular season and celebrate Senior Day on Sunday. DePaul and Cincinnati clash at 2 p.m. at McGrath Arena and a pre match ceremony will highlight the accomplishments of Blue Demon seniors Stacy Pando and Maureen Zigulich.