Atlanta, Ga., Oct. 5, 2014 – The No. 4-ranked Washington University in St. Louis volleyball team had its 12-match win streak come to an end with a 25-20, 21-25, 14-25, 12-25 loss to the University of Chicago at the University Athletic Association (UAA) Round Robin Sunday afternoon.
Washington U. got off to a strong start in the match, building an 11-3 lead in the first set after back-to-back kills by junior Jackie Nelligan. Chicago eventually rallied to cut the lead to 21-16 on an ace serve, but junior Nkiru Udenze hit a kill off the top of the block and sophomore Caroline Dupont got a kill to make it 23-16 in favor of the Bears. The Bears got to set-point after an attack by Chicago sailed long out of bounds. After the Maroons scored a pair of points, junior Allison Zastrow put away a kill to give Washington U. a 25-20 win in the first set.
In the second set, the teams played to a 6-6 tie before Chicago made a 5-1 run to take control. After the Maroons stretched their lead to 14-9, the Bears got a side-out on a serving error, and Dupont and sophomore Alex Sheredy hit back-to-back kills to bring Washington U. to within 14-12. Chicago got a pair of points after taking a timeout to regain control and held on for a 25-21 win to even the match score at one set each.
The Maroons got Washington U. out of system with aggressive serving in the third set, recording four aces in the set against the Bears. A kill down the line by Zastrow made the score 6-4 in favor of Chicago early in the set, but the Maroons went on a 7-1 run that included three straight aces to build a 13-5 advantage. Washington U. was unable to get closer than six the remainder of the set as the Maroons earned a 25-14 win. The fourth set was similar to the third with the teams playing to a 6-6 tie after a kill by Nelligan. The Bears' serve on the next point went long and led to a 9-2 run for the Maroons to give them a 15-8 lead. Washington U. was unable to score back-to-back points the remainder of the match as Chicago won the fourth set 25-12 to end the match.
Washington U. finished with a .174 (48-23-144) attack percentage in the match, while Chicago hit .285 (52-13-137) as a team. The Maroons had more attacking errors in the first set (seven) than the other three sets combined (six). Chicago also tallied 10 team blocks and 10 ace serves, while Washington U. had three blocks and just one ace.
Zastrow paced the Bears with 12 kills while hitting .321 (12-3-28). Udenze finished with nine kills, while Nelligan and sophomore Amanda Palucki had eight kills each. Junior Cassie Wang tallied 21 assists and seven digs, while senior Lindsay Juriga posted 15 assists and eight digs. Sheredy and sophomore Kalehua Katagiri had 13 digs each to lead Washington U. defensively.
Washington U. (20-3, 2-1 UAA) returns to action at the Elmhurst Invite II Friday-Saturday, Oct. 10-11, in Elmhurst, Ill. The Bears are scheduled to play three top-15 teams at the tournament, including No. 10 Elmhurst College and No. 8 Juniata College Friday, and No. 13 University of St. Thomas (Minn.) and Simpson College Saturday.
Bear Notebook: Washington U. leads the all-time series against Chicago 35-3 … The Maroons' three wins in the series have come in the UAA Round Robin each of the last three seasons … Chicago's 10 service aces were the most allowed by Washington U. in a match this season … Nelligan hit .438 (8-1-16) in the match, her 11th match hitting above .400 this season.