Hurricanes Fall to Blue Devils in Season Finale
Nov. 25, 2005
CORAL GABLES, <?xml:namespace prefix=”st1″ ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags”?>Fla. – The University of Miami volleyball team fell to visiting Duke 3-1, (19-30, 18-30, 30-22, 25-30), in its final match of the season Friday afternoon at the Knight Sports Complex. The Hurricanes close the season with a 16-14 overall record and an 11-11 mark in ACC play. The Blue Devils improve to 23-7, 17-5 ACC. <?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>
“We lost to a very good team today,” said head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch. “They passed great and when we were handling the ball well, we were able to answer that. We had our chances but unfortunately we came out to a slow start in game four. I thought we played very well in game three and four and had a chance to change the tide of the match. “
The Hurricanes were led by redshirt junior Francheska Savage who registered 18 kills for a .417 hitting percentage. She also contributed two service aces and five total blocks (1BS, 4BA).
Senior Karla Johnson knocked down 13 kills and four block assists while redshirt sophomore Ciara Michel went eight-for-nine with only one error for a .778 hitting percentage. Michel also posted four total blocks (1BS, 3BA).
Defensively both junior Ann Gallo and sophomore Michelle Bruin tallied 11 digs.
“I was very pleased with Ciara’s play today. I thought she was outstanding both offensively and blocking,” continued Lantagne Welch. “Michelle passed very well and Francheska was a big gun for us offensively.”
The Hurricanes jumped to an early 4-2 lead to open the match before the Blue Devils tallied six-straight points to take the lead for good as they ran away with a 30-19 game one win.
Game two saw Miami once again take an early lead, jumping ahead 10-7. The Blue Devils managed to tie the score at 11-all and then on two more occasions before putting up four-consecutive points to take a 16-13 lead. The Hurricanes got to within four but could not make up the difference as the Blue Devils took a 30-18 victory and a 2-0 match lead into the break.
Miami came out firing in game three, hitting .467 while holding Duke to a .229 hitting percentage. Both teams exchanged points at the onset of the game before the Hurricanes jumped ahead 14-12. Duke tied the score at 15-all but Miami garnered three-straight points to take an 18-15 lead. The Hurricanes continued to build their lead and ended the game on a 5-1 run for a 30-22 win.
Miami fell behind 8-0 to open game four. Though the Hurricanes chipped away at the Blue Devils’ lead to get as close as three points, they could not close the gap as Duke claimed a 30-25 win for the match victory.
The Blue Devils had four players turn in double-digit kill performances, including Carrie DeMange’s match-high 20 kills.
The match marked the final home match for senior captains Kaitlin Kozak and Karla Johnson.
“Karla and Kaitlin have been tremendous in their careers here,” concluded Lantagne Welch. “I’m very proud of everything they’ve given to our program. I just wish that we could have sent them off with a win.”