ELON, N.C. – The Elon volleyball team kept each set close but was not able to claim a set win against Northeastern, falling 3-0 (21-25, 24-26, 22-25), today, Sept. 28, in Alumni Gym. The win marked the first of the season in Colonial Athletic Association play for the Huskies (8-7, 1-1 CAA), while the Phoenix is now 5-12 (0-2 CAA).
“This was a tough match for our team today,” said Elon head coach Mary Tendler. “We played really well and put forth a lot of effort to build leads but couldn’t seem to finish down the stretch. Credit goes to Northeastern for making the plays necessary to win.”
Ally Karle posted 10 blocks off 20 attempts and only one error to hit .429, while Megan Gravley led all players with 15 kills. Chelsea Rafetto recorded a double-double with 31 assists (10.3/set) and 15 digs both of which were team-highs. Catherine Head finished with four blocks, two solo, to help the maroon and gold to seven total team blocks.
In the first set, kills by Gravley, Head and Karle helped Elon to a 7-3 advantage. After a block by Kris Harris and Sydney Busa helped the Phoenix maintain the four-point lead, 11-7, the Huskies rallied to even the score at 14-all. The set would see three more ties by the time the score reached 18-all and Northeastern moved ahead 20-18. Kills by Harris and Busa kept the maroon and gold within one, 21-20, but the Huskies held off the Phoenix for a 25-21 win.
The second set started off tight with seven ties before a block by Harris and Gravley and a kill by Gravley gave Elon an 11-9 lead. The Phoenix led by as much as five, 18-13, before Northeastern used the serve of Ashlee Asada to score five straight and even the score again, 18-all. The teams would trade points back and forth until Elon claimed set point, 24-23, after a Gravley kill. The Huskies then managed to take the next three points and win the set, 26-24.
The third set took on the tone of the others with a tight score through most of the set. Neither team led by more than two points with Elon holding the advantage most of the time and then moving out to a 20-16 lead after back-to-back kills by Harris. Northeastern tied the score for the seventh time of the set, 21-all, and then took the edge, 23-22. The Huskies closed out the set and the match with the final two points to take a 25-22 victory and the match sweep.
Elon makes its first CAA road trip next week with a match at James Madison on Thursday, Oct. 2, at 7 p.m. in Harrisonburg, Va.