NORFOLK, Va., Oct. 20, 2010 - Senior middle blocker Jessica Zeroual (Ottawa, Ont./De La Salle) was one of four Dukes to finish double-digit kills as James Madison volleyball defeated Norfolk State, 3-1, at James D. Gill Gymnasium in Norfolk, Va. on Wednesday evening.
JMU won by set scores of 24-26, 25-13, 25-9 and 28-26 to improve to 17-5 overall and 4-3 in true road games. The Dukes end the non-conference portion of their schedule with a 12-3 record. The Spartans dropped to 9-15.
In addition to her 12 kills, Zeroual added a match-high five blocks and hit .474 after committing just three errors. Sophomore outside hitter Danielle Erb (Tampa, Fla./Plant) picked up her 11th double-double, finishing with 10 kills and a match-high 13 digs. Senior outside hitter Lindsay Callahan (Virginia Beach, Va./Landstown) chipped in 11 kills, five digs, three service aces, two assists and two blocks while junior outside hitter Holly Wall (Kaukauna, Wisc./Kaukauna) had 10 kills, nine digs and a pair of blocks.
JMU out-hit NSU .305 to .086 and held a 10-6 advantage in blocks. Senior Lauren Fanelli (Moon Township, Pa./Moon Area) and sophomore Megan Wiechmann (Sunland, Calif./Village Christian) combined for 41 assists, eight digs and three blocks.
Ellica Morris and Charlotte Armstead led the Spartans finishing with 15 and 13 kills, respectively. Morris added six digs to finish tied with Arielle Knafel for a team-high. Setter Nicole Kessner led all players with 29 assists.
The first set was tightly contested with neither team opening up a lead of more than three points. JMU appeared to be in control of the match after taking a 22-20 lead late in the set, but the Spartans followed a timeout with a 6-2 run to take the first set.
JMU wasted no time responding in set two, winning 20 of the first 26 points and forcing NSU to use both of its timeouts. Norfolk rallied briefly with a 4-0 run late in the set, but a service error by Morris ended the set at 25-13 in favor of the Dukes.
The Dukes took an 11-5 lead early in set three to extend the momentum from set two. Following a Spartan timeout Madison stretched its lead to 18-8, including a pair of kills by Zeroual. After another NSU timeout, JMU closed the set on a 7-1 run to finish the set 25-9. The nine points were the fewest scored against JMU in a set this season.
Set four was a back-and-forth battle that featured 12 tie scores and four lead changes and neither team lead by more than three points. The Spartans were the first team to reach set point, holding a 24-21 led. Madison fought off three straight set points by capitalizing on two NSU attack errors and a kill by Erb. Twice more the Dukes kept the set alive on set point as Zeroual picked up a pair of kills before another Spartan attack error and a service ace point the match away.
JMU returns home this Saturday, Oct. 23, to take Colonial Athletic Association rival George Mason at Sinclair Gymnasium/Godwin Hall.
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