Hurricanes Win Houston Invitational with Five-Game Victory Over Houston
Sept. 3, 2005
<?xml:namespace prefix=”st1″ ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags”?>HOUSTON, Texas. – Senior outside hitter Karla Johnson matched the school kills in a match record with a 30 kill performance to lead the University of Miami volleyball team past Houston, 3-2 (30-32, 30-25, 30-27, 17-30, 15-5), Saturday evening in the championship match of the Houston Invitational held at the Athletics/Alumni Center. <?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>
The Hurricanes (3-0), who have won four straight dating back to their last match of the 2004 season, broke Houston’s (4-2) four match winning streak.
Johnson matched the total kills in a match record set in 2001 by Marcella Gamarra and set a new record for most kills in a five-game match. The Houston native capped off a stellar homecoming by recording a double-double after adding a personal-best 11 digs to her kill total. Johnson also posted six total blocks (1BS, 5BA).
Johnson was merely the tip of the iceberg as many other Miami players turned in impressive performances and personal-bests’. Junior outside hitter Sara Duncan recorded a personal-best 15 kills while junior libero Ann Gallo matched a personal-best with 19 digs. Redshirt junior middle blocker recorded 13 kills to go with a team-high two service aces and four total blocks (1BS, 3BA) as fellow middle blocker, redshirt sophomore Ciara Michel, posted eight block assists. Junior setter Jill Robinson turned in a double-double by dishing out 54 assists and tallying 13 digs.
In game one, Miami took an early 10-8 lead and kept Houston at bay for most of the game until three back-to-back kills gave them a 25-23 lead. The Hurricanes battled back, tying the score on three different occasions but could not overcome the Cougars who won, 32-30.
A revitalized Miami squad hit the court in the next two games taking a 30-25 victory in game two before winning game three by a 30-27 margin. Though the Hurricanes forced a combined 14 Cougar errors, the two games saw an intense back and forth battle that had 19 tied scores and seven lead changes.
Houston forced a deciding fifth game when they took advantage of numerous Miami attacking errors to win game four, 30-17.
After losing the first point in game five, the Hurricanes scored 13 of the next 15 points forcing seven Cougar attack errors during the run to claim a 15-5 victory and the Houston Invitational Crown.
Miami returns to Coral Gables, Fla. next weekend to host the Hurricane Invitational Sept.9-10 where Miami will welcome Tulane, JacksonvilleState and Xavier.