WILLIAMSBURG, Va., Oct. 22, 2011 – Redshirt junior outside hitter Natalie Abel (Washington, Pa./Trinity) and senior outside hitter Holly Wall (Kaukauna, Wisc./Kaukauna) combined for 21 kills, 19 digs and four blocks to lead the James Madison volleyball team to 3-0 sweep of William & Mary at Kaplan Arena in Williamsburg, Va., on Saturday night.
JMU won by set scores of 25-21, 25-20, 25-16 to win its fourth consecutive road game. The Dukes improved to 17-6 overall and 7-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association. The Tribe dropped to 8-13 and 2-7 in league play.
Abel finished the match with 12 kills and 10 digs to record her second double-double of the weekend and her 12th of the season. She committed just two errors in 29 attempts to hit .345. Wall hit .348 with nine kills against one error in 23 attempts while adding nine digs, three blocks, two assists and a service ace. Sophomore middle blocker Kelly Maguire (Long Valley, N.J./West Morris Central) came off the bench to collect five kills on .625 hitting. She tied Wall, junior outside hitter Danielle Erb (Tampa, Fla./Plant) and freshman middle blocker Lizzy Briones (Siloam Springs, Ark./Siloam Springs) for the team lead in blocks with three each.
Redshirt freshman setter Kristi Richardson (Glen Allen, Va./Hermitage) led all players with 20 assists while junior setter Megan Wiechmann (Sunland, Calif./Village Christian) contributed 13 assists and five digs. Sophomore libero Katie Daorai (Tampa, Fla./Plant) had a team-best 12 digs.
William & Mary was led by Paulette Grand Pre with nine kills, 12 digs, two blocks and a service ace. Monika Stanciauskas was second on the team with four kills, adding three blocks and a service ace. Celine Alasomuka collected a match-high 16 digs while setter Carolina Rivas chipped in 15 assists, two digs and a kill.
JMU outhit W&M .279 to .051 while leading in blocks eight to seven. The Tribe had 49 digs to Madison’s 47, but had just two service aces and 10 service errors.
William & Mary came out strong in set one, building a four-point lead two separate times. After a kill by Brooke Bauernfeind gave the Tribe a 14-10 advantage, the Dukes used a 6-0 run to take its first lead of the set. They stretched the lead out to as big as four points at 21-17 following a kill by Abel. A quick 4-1 run by W&M cut it to one forcing JMU head coach Lauren Steinbrecher to use a timeout. Madison won three straight points out of the break to finally put the set away. Daorai collected half of her digs in the set to help lead a JMU defense that held W&M to -.024 hitting.
The Dukes got off to a better start in set two, grabbing the early lead at 9-6. The Tribe got as close as one point two separate times, but never got over the hump, ultimately losing five of the final seven points to drop the set 25-20. Erb and Abel had three kills each to pace Madison in the set.
After the break, the teams split the first 22 points to sit tied at 11-11 halfway through the set. From there, JMU closed on a 14-5 run, led by five kills from Abel to cruise to the victory. Abel hit .667 in the set with six kills and zero error in nine total attempts.
The Dukes are back in action next weekend as they continue their four-match road trip with games at UNCW and Georgia State.
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