Juniata blanks Mount Union
Dominating victory puts Eagles in regional championship match
ASTON, Pa. – Juniata advanced to the regional final round with a 3-0 victory against Mount Union University Saturday afternoon at the Mirenda Center on Neumann University campus in the NCAA Division III women's volleyball regionals.
Set scores for the match were 25-16, 25-22, and 25-21.
The Eagles broke open the match taking a demanding 9-0 lead, featuring four Raider attack errors, two sophomore Courtney Greenberg service aces, two Mount Union (25-8) ball-handling errors, and a sophomore Courtney Lydick kill.
Juniata (27-7) kept the scoring trend going throughout the remainder of the set, as the Eagles swung for a .294 hitting percentage while the Raiders managed only a .085 attack percentage.
A kill by sophomore Rachelle Wiegand clinched set one for Juniata.
The Eagles led set two early but fell behind late in the match when Mount Union went up 21-19. However, the Eagles battled to equalize at 21 apiece with a senior Amanda Schmidt kill on a senior Libby Morrison service. Schmidt earned another equalizing kill just two plays later to tie the match at 22.
From that point, Juniata pulled ahead on a freshman Brittani Young service, with a Wiegand kill and a junior Kelsey Fuller termination. Juniata took set two on a Raider attack error.
The third set began full of back and forth action between the two foes, but Juniata continued to creep ahead of Mount Union just enough to not allow the Raiders to recover the score deficit.
After a Juniata timeout with the score in the Eagles' favor at 23-21, Juniata returned to the floor ready to put the game away.
Morrison assisted Fuller to a kill to give Juniata game and match point. On the next play Wiegand and Lydick blocked an attempted Raider kill for the win.
Wiegand paced the Eagles with 14 kills, the second-most for her in a match this season. Lydick wasn't far behind with 12 kills and three errors on 24 swings for a .375 attack percentage. Lydick also registered a single solo block and two block assists.
Schmidt also charted a solo block and threw-in nine kills for Juniata, while Fuller tossed-in seven terminations. Freshman Amelia Kepler (Kane, Pa./Kane Area) was the only other Eagle to chart a kill, and she put away five for Juniata.
Morrison sprawled for 27 digs and Greenberg assisted 41 times.
With the victory, Juniata advances to the regional final match against either Eastern University (33-2) or Hiram University (27-8) to be played at 4 p.m. Sunday at the Mirenda Center on Neumann University's campus.