Nov. 7, 2010
EL PASO, Texas - Freshman Cori Martone posted 13 kills and hit .579 to guide the Tulane volleyball team to a three set victory at UTEP on Sunday (Nov. 7) afternoon. Tulane hit .247 as a team and compiled 41 kills to just 29 for the Miners to collect their second straight road victory by scores of 25-19, 25-19, 25-21.
"Nikki is playing well, controlling our back row, and we did a good job of executing the little things today," said head coach Sinisa Momic. "We had a few too many service errors, but overall we did some things well today. With a lot of new faces coming in this year we had a lot of players moving and maturing at different speeds. Even though we are still making errors, we have seen some improvements and maturity in our team overall. These were two very good wins for our team this weekend."
In the opening set, Tulane grabbed the early lead with a 3-1 run to open the set and led by five points at 10-5 on a Nikki Osuna service ace. The two teams traded points to make it a 21-17 contest when Tulane scored three straight points thanks to a kill from Cori Martone and a pair of blocks from the rookie. Martone finished off the set with a kill to give Tulane a 25-19 win in set one.
The second set began with a back-and-forth exchange from the Green Wave and the Miners, with Lindsey Shepard grabbing a solo block to tie the set at 7-7. Tulane would score ten of the next 12 points to grab control of the match at 17-9. Martone had three kills during that spurt, while Milica Jovic, Izabela Grot and Mel Mandelbaum also chipped in points during the run. The Miners would pull within four points at 21-17, but the Green Wave scored four of the final six points to close out the 25-19 set win.
Martone tied for the match high with 13 kills and Osuna tied for the match high with 11 digs. Mandelbaum handed out 19 assists and Lilly Wolfe chipped in 12, while Grot added 12 kills in the victory. Three Green Wave players hit better than .400 in the match, with Martone hitting .579, Jovic converting at a .429 clip and Grot coming in at .417.
The Green Wave are now 9-18 overall and sit at 6-9 in Conference USA play after winning their final two matches on their four-match road trip and will return home this weekend for a pair of C-USA tilts. Tulane will open the home stand with a match versus Memphis at 7:00 on Friday evening at Fogelman Arena.