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Women's volleyball takes split out of final day at Trinity University National Invitational

(Posted October 31, 2009)

SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- The Juniata College women's volleyball posted a win and a loss on Saturday's final day of competition at the Trinity University National Invitational.

Juniata opened the day with a 3-1 win over eighth-ranked Wittenberg University, by set scores os 25-19, 25-16, 21-25, and 25-19.

The Eagles wrapped up their 2009 regular season with a 3-2 loss to second-ranked University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, falling by set scores of 22-25, 25-23, 18-25, 25-18, and 15-13.

Juniata (29-3) held a 13-11 lead in the decisive fifth set of the UW-Oshkosh match, following a kill by freshman middle Kelsey Fuller (Red Lion, Pa./Red Lion). An attack error by Amanda Schmidt (Boswell, Pa./North Star) and a block by the Titans' Katie Beining and Jacque Ray tied the set at 13-13. A Paige Johnston (Lancaster, Pa./Hempfield) attack error and a Steph Strauss (Penn Hills, Pa./Penn Hills) setting error allowed UW-Oshkosh to take the set and the match.

Outside hitter Drew Barnhart (Titusville, Pa./Titusville) put down 14 kills on 35 swings for the Eagles, while Fuller and Johnston added 12 and 10 kills respectively. Strauss set 44 assists for the Eagles, however Juniata hit just .182 for the match - including .000 in both the fourth and fifth sets.

Juniata did outblock UW-Oshkosh, 9.0 to 8.0, led by Johnston's four total blocks to go with three service aces and 15 digs. Ashley Schnader (Reinholds, Pa./Garden Spot) and Schmidt had three total blocks each.

Ray paced the Titans offensively with 18 kills, while Beining racked up 13 terminations.

In the day's first match over Wittenberg, Barnhart was again Juniata's kills leader with 17 on 39 swings with just three errors รข?" good enough for a .359 hitting percentage from the left antenna. Johnston tallied 11 kills on the right side, but also had seven errors on her 31 swings.

Strauss set 34 assists for a Juniata squad that hit .212 for the match.

Senior libero Megan Sollenberger (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Cumberland Valley) turned up 19 digs against the Tigers, while Strauss and Johnston had 13 apiece.

Juniata returns to the court on Saturday, Nov. 7, when it hosts the final two rounds of the 2009 Landmark Conference Women's Volleyball Tournament. At stake will be the Landmark's automatic qualifier into the NCAA Tournament; exact semifinal matchups will be determined following Wednesday's first round matches.

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