Nov. 22, 2013
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Using the momentum of winning a wild 39-37 set one, the University of Virginia volleyball team won sets two and three to complete the sweep of the University of Notre Dame Friday afternoon at Purcell Pavilion. Set scores were 39-37, 25-22, 25-21.
Since 2007, only four sets have gone above 60 points with Friday night producing the latest. The first frame saw Notre Dame and Virginia combine for 76 points, which is the most for the Irish since an 82-point set (42-40) at Pittsburgh Sept. 22, 2007. The only difference between the two, however, is that in 2007 sets ended when a team reached 30 and won by two points instead of the current system of 25 and winning by two.
One of the oddities in the set for the Irish was that junior defensive specialist Erin Klosterman, who is listed at 5-5 in the media guide, was forced to play all three front row rotations after Notre Dame ran out of subs. The Leonard, Mich., native made the most of her opportunity as she recorded her first career block by teaming with her 6-3 teammate Andie Olsen. Notre Dame fought through those three rotations, which allowed Klosterman to work her way around and serve with the score knotted at 35.
“The team fought really hard in that set and we had opportunities to win it,” said head coach Debbie Brown. “It’s really hard when you lose a set like that. I think the heart we played with was great. There’s no question about that. We were put in a situation where you just had to keep coming up with plays. Erin’s block was amazing. Stuff like that is fun. Unfortunately, it gets erased a little bit when you lose 3-0 because you can’t enjoy it.
“To be honest, I never thought we were in a great rhythm in the match, even in the first set. I never felt like we were in control with things running smoothly.”
After the Cavaliers clinched the thrilling first set, they were able to complete the sweep in sets two and three. UVA appeared to have its offense clicking all night as it hit .326 with 57 kills in 132 chances. Helping keep the offense in sync was an aggressive serving mentality that led to seven aces, but also 14 errors, and a match-high 9.5 blocks.
UVA had three players reach double digits in kills, led by sophomore Natalie Bausback’s 17. The outside hitter also led the team with five blocks. Junior Tori Janowski (12) and freshman Haley Kole (10) joined Bausback in double figures for kills. Janowski registered a double-double as she added 10 digs. Setter Lauren Fuller had a strong match with 47 assists, five kills, six digs and three blocks.
Notre Dame hit .250 for the match and produced 50 kills, but tallied only one service ace and eight blocks. Junior Meg Vonderhaar led the Irish with a career-high 14 kills on 30 chances to hit .333.
“Meg had a great match and I’m happy for her,” said Brown. “She took some good swings and she really paid attention to the scouting report and the shots that were available.”
Elsewhere for the Irish, senior setter Maggie Brindock had 39 assists to move into fifth all-time in Notre Dame history with 3,126 assists. The Rockwall, Texas native added seven kills (.375 A%), three digs and two blocks.
The Irish (12-17, 6-12 ACC) close out the season next weekend with a pair of home matches against Boston College (4 p.m. Friday) and Syracuse (2 p.m. Saturday). Seniors Maggie Brindock, Sammie Brown, Andrea McHugh, Andie Olsen and Nicole Smith will be honored in pre-match festivities beginning around 1:50 p.m. (ET) Saturday.
Set 1: A record-breaking first set saw the two squads put up 76 points in a thrilling opening frame. Twenty-two ties and seven lead changes highlighted a set that witnessed 15 different players record kills. Both teams had their way on offense as the Cavaliers hit .361 (28 kills) and the Irish hit .346 (24 kills). Only 8.5 blocks were recorded between the two squads. Notre Dame held a 23-19 lead, but couldn’t maintain it as UVA came back to tie the set at 23. From there the two teams went back-and-forth with Virginia holding 13 set points, but Notre Dame fighting back time and time again. However, the Cavaliers wouldn’t be denied as a kill by Janowski and a service ace by Jasmine Burton gave UVA a 1-0 lead.
Set 2: A more routine set occurred in the second frame as the Irish fell behind early and could never recover. Virginia built a three-point lead at 9-6, and was able to maintain it for virtually the entire set. The Irish made quite a comeback at the end, going on a 9-5 run after 17-13 to tie the set at 22. However, the Cavaliers claimed the final three points off a kill by Bausback, a kill by Morgan Blair and a block from Fuller and Blair to win 25-22. Notre Dame struggled mightily on offense in the second set, hitting just .061 with 10 kills and eight errors in 33 chances. Virginia countered with 15 kills and a .333 attack percentage in 33 opportunities.
Set 3: Despite out-hitting Virginia .282-.263 in set three, the Irish couldn’t overcome three service aces from the Cavaliers and two service errors of their own as UVA got a big lead at 17-10 and held on for the 25-21 clincher. Notre Dame ultimately trimmed the lead to 23-20, but a block by Burton and Bausback and a kill by Bausback awarded the win to the visiting Cavaliers.
-- Russell Dorn, Assistant Media Relations Director