Elon Volleyball Falls Short to JMU

ELON, N.C. – Despite a team-best 16 kills from senior outside hitter Megan Gravley, the Elon volleyball team was unable to overcome James Madison as the Phoenix fell in the Colonial Athletic Association match 3-0 (21-25, 15-25, 25-27) tonight, Oct. 2, in Alumni Gym.

Gravley had her third straight double-digit kill effort and the ninth overall on the season for the Phoenix (3-13, 0-3 CAA). Sydel Curry had 30 assists on the night for Elon and also contributed on the defensive side with three blocks.

Ally Karle led the Phoenix with four blocks while Maddie Jaudon had a team-high nine digs on the match.

“Our blocking, which is usually a positive for us, struggled tonight,” said Elon head coach Mary Tendler. “Megan had a great match and played with a lot of confidence. We will have to put up a better defensive effort on Sunday against Towson.”

The Dukes’ (13-3, 3-0 CAA) Meghan Niski had a game-high 16 kills while Sarah Patterson tallied a match-best 36 assists. Taylor Austin led the defensive front for JMU with 12 digs.

How it happened: In the first set, after falling behind to a five-point deficit, 16-11, the Phoenix battled back to pull within one, 19-18, after forcing an attack error on the Dukes. Elon however could not put a run together as JMU held on for the first set win, 25-21.

During the second set, the Phoenix took a 12-10 advantage after consecutive kills by Gravley and Sydney Busa. The Dukes countered with seven unanswered points to take back control of the game and closed out the remainder of the set on a 15-3 run to go up 2-0 on a 25-15 win.

The Phoenix would fall behind by five in the third set, 17-12, but battled back with a 7-2 run to tie the match at 19-all after a Kayla Agae kill. Elon would move in front of the Dukes, 23-22, thanks to a kill by Karle, but JMU was able to knot the game again at 23-23. Despite Elon fighting back to give the set its 10th tie overall at 25-25, the Dukes were able to pull away with the 27-25 victory to conclude the sweep of the match.

Notes: JMU leads the all-time series with the Phoenix, 4-0…The match marked the 10th time this season Elon has out-blocked its opponent.

Up next: Elon remains home in Alumni Gym to host Towson in its next match on Sunday, Oct. 4, at 2 p.m.