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Balanced Attack Leads CanesVB Past Louisville

CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The University of Miami volleyball team opened the weekend with a three-set victory over Louisville.

Miami (16-7, 9-3 ACC) took the opening set, 25-22, thanks to a balanced attack that hit .343 in the set. Taylor Scott led all Canes with five kills, while Savanah Leaf and Kelsie Groot each added four kills and Emani Sims chipped in with three kills to help Miami take a 1-0 lead in the match.

The Canes took a 2-0 lead into the intermission following their 25-21 victory in the second set. Groot and Scott were active once again for Miami, combining for nine kills in the second set. The Canes had eight blocks in the second set, while holding Louisville (14-10, 6-6 ACC) to a .103 hitting percentage.

Miami took the third set, 25-15, thanks to a balanced attack that saw six different players record a kill. Setter Haley Templeton tallied three kills in the third set, while distributing 11 of her 41 assists on the night. The victory was Miami’s first win over Louisville in program history.

“I don’t think we played our best match, but we served well and we got a lot of opportunities in transition,” head coach Jose “Keno” Gandara said. “I was pretty happy with how we hit. We’ve been working on that. Louisville has some physicality on the pins and we were able to control them a little bit. It was fun to get the right distribution and see the numbers be pretty good.”

Groot and Scott tied for the team lead with 12 kills apiece. Groot, a sophomore, added eight digs and two blocks, while Scott, a junior, had eight digs and an ace.

“They were huge,” Gandara said. “We have to be able to do that. We can’t just be one-dimensional. Savanah and Emani have been doing it consistently and we need more people to step up night in and night out.”

Leaf finished the night with 10 kills and a team-high 12 digs to record her team-best 10th double-double of the season. Fellow senior Emani Sims was also active for Miami recording six kills while hitting a team-best .364 and leading the Canes with five blocks.

Freshmen Sylvia Hernandez and Sakile Simmons also contributed in Miami’s sweep over Louisville. Simmons had four kills and a block, while Hernandez added 10 digs as the Hurricanes’ defensive specialist.

“Everyone doing well helped all of us out,” Scott said. “It was easier to get kills because another blocker was looking at someone else, so then it just opened a lot of things up. It was a team effort, so that helped.”

Miami is back in action Sunday, hosting Virginia at 1 p.m. on Nov. 9. Admission is free. Following this weekend’s two-match home stand, Miami will travel to Pennsylvania for a match against Pitt. First serve against the Panthers is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Nov. 14.

For all the latest information on Miami Hurricanes volleyball, follow the official Twitter feed, @CanesVB, or “Like Us” on Facebook at facebook.com/UMVolleyball. The program is also on Instagram.