ELON, N.C. – The Elon volleyball team kept each set close but was not able to close it out against UNCG, falling 3-0 (19-25, 21-25, 20-25), tonight, Nov. 13, in Alumni Gym. The Phoenix is now 16-15 on the season and 7-9 in the Southern Conference, while the Spartans improve to 16-12 (9-6 SoCon).
“Serving and passing has been a strength for us this season, but it broke down tonight,” said Elon head coach Mary Tendler. “We will work on that in practice and be better at it against Davidson. I’m really looking forward to celebrating our seniors on Saturday in our last home match.”
Megan Gravley led the team with 13 kills, while Ally Karle posted 11 kills and four blocks. Ana Nicksic recorded a double-double with 32 assists and 13 digs. Cali Estes tallied a game-high five blocks to help the Phoenix out block the Spartans, 7-5.
Elon started off to a 4-1 lead in the first set after kills and a block by Estes and Karle. With the set tied at six-all, UNCG managed a 6-1 run to take a five-point advantage, 12-7. The Phoenix closed the gap to two, 15-13, after kills by Kayla Agae and Karle, but the Spartans held on to win by a 25-19 final.
The second set was tight with seven ties by the time the set reached 11-all. UNCG took a four-point lead, 16-12, forcing an Elon timeout, before kills by Gravley and Danielle Smith pulled the maroon and gold back within two, 17-15. With the Spartans up 23-19, back-to-back kills by Gravley halted UNCG before the set ended in favor of the blue and gold, 25-21.
The Phoenix used a kill by Estes and forced several Spartan errors to take a 3-1 edge early in the third set. With the set tied at 11-all, kills by Karle and Nicksic put the maroon and gold back up by two, 14-12. The Spartans would even the score again at 14-all and eventually take the lead, 20-18. Kills by Estes and Agae pulled Elon within one, 21-20, but UNCG managed to close out the set on a 4-0 run and win 25-20.
Elon will play its final regular season match at home on Saturday, Nov. 16, against Davidson at 7 p.m. The match will mark senior night for the program’s two seniors