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Juniata women's volleyball fights off Haverford for 3-0 win

(Posted September 23, 2009)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Juniata College dominated Haverford College statistically, but didn't exactly do so on the scoreboard as the Eagle women's volleyball team upended 21st-ranked Haverford College, 27-25, 25-16, 27-25, on Wednesday night at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.

The second-ranked Eagles hit .305 for the match with just 12 attack errors, while holding the Fords (13-2) to a .112 attack percentage with 22 errors. Juniata logged 10.0 total blocks on the night, while Haverford notched just 3.0 points at the net.

However Haverford got points when it counted, and twice took Juniata into extra points before the Eagles would claim the set.

In the first set, the Fords actually took a 3-0 lead, before the Eagles knotted the match at 3-3 following a Steph Strauss (Penn Hills, Pa./Penn Hills) kill and a pair of Haverford attack errors. The set remained a one-point contest all the way to 12-12, when Juniata logged three straight points off Strauss' serve. Drew Barnhart (Titusville, Pa./Titusville) and Kristin Noetzel (Closter, N.J./Northern Valley Regiona) each recorded a kill during the run.

Juniata remained at least two in front of Haverford all the way to 23-21, when a Rebecca Salvo kill and a pair of Juniata attack errors allowed the Fords to pull even with the Eagles. A pair of side out kills advanced the score to 24-24, and a termination by Olivia Coburn-Flynn put Haverford on set point, 25-24. However three straight Haverford attack errors, two of which were in response to Noetzel serves, allowed Juniata to post the win.

The third set was a neck-and-neck affair, with neither side able to take control. Haverford led 23-20 coming down the stretch, following a pair of Salvo kills, and threatened to force Juniata to a fourth set. However a side out kills by Barnhart cut the lead to 23-21, and a Kelsey Cantwell attack error followed by a block by Ashley Schnader (Reinholds, Pa./Garden Spot) and Paige Johnston (Lancaster, Pa./Hempfield) tied the set at 23-23.

A Barnhart kill put the Eagles on match point, 24-23, but Salvo knotted the set at 24-24 with a kill. Schander put the ball on the floor for Juniata to give the Eagles a 25-24 lead and the serve for match point #2, but a service error by Barnhart again tied things up at 25-25.

Juniata finally closed out Haverford with a pair of kills by Johnston, her ninth and tenth terminations of the match and giving the senior her second double-digit kill performance of the season. Johnston also had a hand on four blocks, and had one service ace.

Freshman Kelsey Fuller (Red Lion, Pa./Red Lion) and Barnhart each logged 12 kills to pace the Eagles offensively. Strauss guided the offense with 35 assists, while senior libero Megan Sollenberger (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Cumberland Valley) tallied 14 digs to lead Juniata defensively. Fuller and sophomore middle Amanda Schmidt (Boswell, Pa./North Star) each recorded three blocks.

For Haverford, Rebecca Salvo finished with 11 kills on 25 swings for a .360 attack percentage, and was the only Ford player in double figures on kills. Rachel Salvo and Caitlyn Tranquillo recorded 13 digs, while Kate Comey had 32 assists.

Juniata head back onto the road this weekend, as it travels to Princeton, N.J., to take on Princeton University at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 26.

For a video recap of this game, click here.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.