Nov. 19, 2010
NEW ORLEANS - A steady attack and a plethora of hitting errors by the Thundering Herd helped the Tulane volleyball team earn a 3-1 victory over Marshall at the Cam Henderson Center on Friday (Nov. 19) evening. Tulane had three players reach double-digits in kills and setter Mel Mandelbaum posted her ninth double-double of the season in the victory. The victory came by scores of 25-19, 30-28, 23-25, 25-15 to earn Tulane its eighth Conference USA win of the season.
As a team, Tulane hit .295 as a team and three of their four leading attackers posted hitting percentages of better than .300. In the opening two sets, Tulane hit .333 and .279 respectively to take a 2-0 lead, boasted a .308 attacking percentage in a third set loss, but finished the match off with a .250 attacking percentage, committing just nine errors all night.
"We made a big improvement in our hitting today, with three players in double digits in kills, and it was efficient," said Tulane head coach Sinisa Momic. "We weren't brilliant in our serve receive, but our aggressive attack really paid off. Marshall played us tough tonight, but the second set really gave us some momentum and, even though we lost the third set, we were able to carry that momentum to a victory. We kept fighting after the third set and our consistency on offense really paid off for us. We worked on not hitting into the block this week at practice and we had much better swings tonight."
The Olive and Blue trailed early on in the opening set, but the final lead for Marshall would come at 9-8 as Izabela Grot posted a kill, Amaris Genemaras aced a serve and an attacking error gave Tulane an 11-9 lead. That was the last lead change of the contest and Tulane eventually pushed their margin to 19-13 on another Grot kill and a pair of Marshall hitting errors ended the opening frame in favor of Tulane.
Marshall grabbed back the momentum with a 25-23 win in the third set, but momentum is only as strong as the next point and Tulane nearly doubled up the Thundering Herd in the fourth set. The Green Wave built an 8-5 advantage, but MU tied things up at 8-8. From that point on, the visiting team outscored the home Herd 17-7 to close out the match.
Grot and Jovic led the way for Tulane with 13 kills each, while Shepard chipped in nine kills. Freshman Mel Mandelbaum posted her ninth double-double of the season with 22 assists and ten digs. Cori Martone added 11 kills and seven blocks, while hitting .474 on the match.
Tulane improves to 11-19 overall and are 8-10 in Conference USA play heading into their final road match of the season at East Carolina on Sunday, November 21. The Pirates and Green Wave will get things underway at 1:00 Central time.