No. 3 Emory slides into second round
Eagles will now face Randolph-Macon on Saturday afternoon
No. 3-ranked Emory DIII tournament on a successful note on Friday, defeating Richard Stockton in an opening-round match at the Newport News (Va.) Regional.
The Eagles upended the Ospreys, 3-0 (25-21, 25-23, 25-15), running their record to 35-4 on the year. Richard Stockton closes out the campaign with a 25-9 ledger.
Emory finished the contest with a .328 attack percentage (51-13 --116) compared to the Osprey's .198 percent (35-13 --111). The Eagles held a 51-45 edge in digs and held a 3-0 advantage in total blocks
Junior middle Breanah Bourque led all players with 14 kills and recorded a .478 hitting mark (14-3 -- 23), her 23rd effort of hitting .400 or higher this season. Junior Alex Duhl made the most of her offensive attempts with a .750 attack percentage on the strength on nine kills and no miscues in 12 attempts. Senior Jessica McAlvany was the other Eagle to finish in double figures in kills with 11 terminations, her third consecutive outing of double digits in that department. Senior Natalie Schonefeld doled out 40 assists and paced the team with 14 digs. Freshman Hannah Everett played a key role in the win with her strong serving resulting in five aces, tying the high-water mark by an Emory player this season.
The first two sets were hotly contested battles with each team countering each other's runs. In the first game, a 10-2 Emory burst, keyed by three kills by Bourque, broke open a 6-6 tie and gave it what seemed to be a comfortable 16-8 advantage. Holding a 19-16 lead, a termination by Duhl, then Bourque, followed by a Richard Stockton attack error, put the Eagles ahead by a 22-16 count. However, the Ospreys made the most of some Emory errors to draw to within one point. Emory then regrouped and closed out the set thanks to a kill by senior Amelia McCall and back-to-back aces by Everett.
Stockton clawed its way to a 13-10 lead in the second set, only to see the Eagles rattle off four unanswered points to assume a one-point lead. Emory still held a slim 22-21 lead before back-to-back kills by McAlvany pushed its lead to 24-21. The Ospreys stayed in the set with two unanswered points, but Emory would take a 2-0 lead in the match thanks to another successful put-away by McAlvany that finished the game.
The third set appeared to be headed toward another down-to-the wire finish. However, a 9-1 Emory sprint allowed it to take a commanding 19-11 advantage. A kill by McAlvany capped a 4-2 advantage that pushed the lead to 10 points, 23-13. Emory then closed out the match on a termination by McAlvany.
The win sends Emory into Saturday's second round where it will meet Randolph-Macon (24-5) at 3:30 p.m. The Yellow Jackets of R-MC advanced following a 3-1 victory against Johns Hopkins in the opening round.