Oct. 14, 2011
CHICAGO – Freshman Toni Alugbue showed no mercy on DePaul with 16 kills during a 3-1 (25-13, 23-25, 25-20, 25-11) volleyball win for Notre Dame Friday evening at McGrath-Phillips Arena. Alugbue hit .448 and blocked four shots as the Irish improved their overall record to 11-6 with a 4-3 mark in BIG EAST Conference action.
DePaul fell to 4-16 (1-6 BIG EAST) and hit .189 on the evening without having a single player reach the double-digit kill mark.
Notre Dame will now take to the friendly skies for a pair of non-conference matches at Hawai’i (Oct. 17-18). Live stats will be available at UND.com.
Sophomore Sam Brown got the Irish on the board with a converted attack in the first and sophomore Andrea McHugh aced the Blue Demons at 3-0. Sophomore Maggie Brindock notched an ace at 14-5 and freshman Jeni Houser dumped an overpass to double the Blue Demons, 18-9.
The Irish hit .375 with four blocks in the first set and slugged at a .326 rate in the contest.
Notre Dame also totaled six aces and nine blocks.
Houser smacked a facial down the line at 5-3 to keep Notre Dame on top to start the second frame only to see DePaul stick around until the 10-10 mark. DePaul forced a Notre Dame timeout after taking a 16-14 lead and barely resembled the same team which hit .031 one set prior. Trailing 17-14, Alugbue went off the block for an Irish kill and a DePaul error brought the Irish to within one at 17-16.
Senior Kristen Dealy laid down an ace at 18-18 with DePaul coming back to take a 21-20 lead before another Irish timeout.
DePaul went ahead, 23-20, when McHugh bounced a kill, senior Frenchy Silva zipped an ace and Houser and Alugbue then teamed for a block to make it 23-23. DePaul would score the next two points.
Silva’s ace clipped the net at 6-1 in the third to help set the tone of a bend-but-don’t-break frame.
Alugbue went to town on an overpass at 14-9 with McHugh adding an ace at 22-17. Alugbue’s 10th slam of the contest was delivered on set point.
The Irish posted a 5-1 fourth-set run to start the engines before cruising to the win.
Junior Hilary Eppink had seven kills and four blocks for Notre Dame.
Silva had a match-high 17 digs and McHugh steadied the Irish with nine kills and nine digs. Dealy posted similar numbers with eight kills and seven digs.
Brindock, who distributed 33 assists, added a pair of aces and six digs.
Houser had 10 kills (.400) on 20 swings with a pair of errors.