Volleyball sweeps Eastern Michigan at home
The women’s volleyball team swept Eastern Michigan Thursday continuing its momentum after beating Western Michigan on Saturday.
Offensively, junior middle blocker Danielle Gotham had 10 kills for Central Michigan Thursday with a consistent .420 hitting percentage. Mid-American Conference West Division Offensive Player of the Week, sophomore outside hitter Kaitlyn McIntyre, had a team-leading 13 kills on the night.
Senior outside hitter Lindsey Dulude and freshman middle blocker Angie White each tallied nine kills.
“The passing tonight was good, and Kelly (Maxwell) made outstanding choices, which made each hitter available,” Gotham said.
MAC West Division Defensive Player of the Week, junior libero Jenna Coates, continued her dominance with a team-leading 16 digs. Dulude had 11 throughout the match, while McIntyre had eight.
“We’re really flowing well and moving well (on defense),” head coach Erik Olson said. “Jenna is doing a great job of reading, and that’s something we’ve been missing.”
The Chippewas recorded six aces Thursday – five of which came in the first two sets to help CMU take a 2-0 advantage at the intermission, before taking set three to end the night.
“We’ve been practicing tough serving at the right time,” Gotham said. “I think our team did a very good job on that.”
McIntyre recorded an ace in the opening set to tie the game at 23-23 and another to win the set 25-23. Dulude also added an ace in the first set.
Senior defensive specialist Samantha Brawley broke a tie late in set two with an ace of her own before Maxwell gave the Chippewas a 21-18 lead with the fifth ace of the night. Coates added one early in the first set.
“(McIntyre) has just found it,” Olson said. “She found it a few matches ago and is doing a great job.”
CMU improved to 8-6 this season, including 2-1 in conference play.
The Chippewas will get a break Friday before hitting the road for Kent, Ohio on Saturday.
There, CMU will be playing in its first conference road match of the season at 7 p.m. in the Memorial Athletic and Convocation Center against Kent State.
The Golden Flashes have had a rough start to the season, coming off a sweep at the hands of Ohio. The sweep marks the sixth in the last seven matches for KSU.
“They’re a team trying to find their identity,” Olson said. “Kent State is a tough place to play on the road, and we haven’t been on the road in awhile.”
Despite the rough start, the Golden Flashes as a team ranked third in the MAC in service aces per set with 1.38 prior to their match with the Bobcats. Senior middle blocker Kathy Krupa leads KSU with .50 aces per set.
“They’ve got an outside that’s pretty athletic,” Olson said. “We’ve got to continue to play point-for-point and not relax.”
Krupa ranks tenth in the MAC with a .300 hitting percentage, while her teammate, sophomore middle blocker Liz Reikow, is just a step ahead of her at No. 9 with a .320 percentage.
“Sometimes our transition forgets to play some balls, so we have to avoid those little breaks and play till the whistle blows,” Gotham said.
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