Elon Volleyball Phoenix Finishes Action in Deacon Classic

Posted by Press Release on September 21, 2014 at 6:17 am under College | Comments are off for this article

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – The Elon volleyball team closed out the tournament play portion of its season tonight, Sept. 20, with two matches in the final day of the Deacon Classic. The Phoenix (4-10), fighting off multiple injuries, suffered losses to Winthrop (8-6), 3-0 (20-25, 14-25, 19-25), and host Wake Forest (10-4), 3-1 (19-25, 25-22, 14-25, 18-25).

“Our team persevered through a lot today,” said Elon head coach Mary Tendler. “They played with a lot of confidence and heart, especially in the Wake Forest match. The experience this past weekend will help us as we move forward as a team.”

Winthrop 3, Elon 0
The Eagles grabbed a 5-1 lead to start the first set before kills by Sydney Busa, Kayla Agae and Catherine Head helped close the gap to two for the Phoenix, 7-5. Elon would keep it close but Winthrop was able to maintain the advantage by a few points and then move up by five, 22-17. A kill by Chanelle Smith and an ace by Busa cut the deficit to two, 22-20. However it was not enough as the Eagles went on to win, 25-20.

In the second set, three straight kills by Busa put the Phoenix up, 3-1, before the Eagles rallied for a 7-5 lead to force an Elon timeout. With Winthrop holding a seven-point edge, 14-7, kills by Agae and Busa moved the maroon and gold within five, 14-9, but the Eagles maintained its edge through the set and claimed the victory, 25-14.

With Winthrop leading the third set, 5-3, two kills by Busa and a block by Ally Karle and Chelsea Rafetto helped the Phoenix to four straight to take a two-point advantage, 7-5. Blocks by Karle, Rafetto and Harris helped keep Elon ahead before the Eagles evened the set at 12-all. Winthrop would then take the lead and move on to a 25-19 win

Busa led all players with 15 kills, while Agae tallied seven kills. Rafetto fell just short of her third straight double-double with 29 assists and nine digs. Smith led the team on defense with 12 digs, while Harris, Rafetto and Karle all posted two blocks.

Wake Forest 3, Elon 1
With the Demon Deacons leading, 19-12, in set one, Tendler was forced to call her final timeout. After the timeout, the Phoenix took the next three points with the help of a kill by Agae and a block by Harris to pull within five, 20-15. WFU kept its edge and moved on to win, 25-19.

Elon started the second set off strong with kills by Agae and Busa and a block by Michelle Klein to hold as much as a three-point advantage. With the set tied at 13-all, a kill by Agae and an ace by Maner helped the maroon and gold to a 3-0 run to move ahead 16-13 and force a WFU timeout. The Deacons came back to take the lead, 20-19, but Elon rallied with a 6-2 run off kills by C. Smith, Agae and Busa and a block by Rafetto and Klein to claim a 25-22 victory and even the match.

In the third set, the Deacons took an early 8-3 lead before a block by Klein and Rafetto and an ace by C. Smith pulled the Phoenix within three, 8-5. WFU managed to extend its advantage to 10, 16-6, but Elon answered with a 6-0 run off kills by Karle and Harris and blocks by Harris, Busa and Karle to close the gap to four, 16-12, and force a Deacon timeout. Wake rallied with nine of the final 11 points to win, 25-14.

The Phoenix kept the fourth set close in the beginning with blocks by Busa, Harris and Karle and kills by Karle and Agae making it a four-all score. Trailing by three, 9-6, a kill by Harris and a block by Harris and Agae pulled the maroon and gold within one, 9-8. Kills by Karle and C. Smith kept Elon within four down the stretch but the Deacons finished with a 25-18 victory to take the match.

Busa led the Phoenix with 10 kills and was named to the all-tournament team. Agae finished with nine kills and 12 digs, while C. Smith had eight kills and eight digs. Harris helped Elon out-block WFU, 13.5-6, with the help of a career-high nine blocks.

The Phoenix travels to Durham, N.C., for its next match on Tuesday, Sept. 23, at North Carolina Central at 7 p.m.

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