Sept. 2, 2017
By Robby Hamman
TOLEDO, Ohio — The Irish (6-0) capped off the BGSU/Toledo Invitational on Saturday evening with their third win in as many matches over the weekend, defeating host Toledo (2-4) in straight-set fashion (25-19, 25-19, 25-17). With the win, Notre Dame remains unbeaten on the season and is off to its best start since the 2005 campaign.
Sophomore Jemma Yeadon recorded a team-high 10 kills for the Irish, while Caroline Holt dished out 30 assists in the winning effort. Ryann DeJarld paced Notre Dame from a defensive perspective, posting 15 digs.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Notre Dame came out of the gates firing on all cylinders on Saturday evening, jumping out to a double-digit lead in the first set at 14-3. The Rockets tried to get back into the frame but the Irish managed to hold the hosts at arm’s length, as Toledo never got closer than five points. Notre Dame took the opening set by a score of 25-19 to gain an early 1-0 advantage in the match.
Toledo managed to make the second set more competitive than the first but Notre Dame still held the upper hand through the majority of the frame. After holding a one-point advantage at 13-12, the Irish claimed six of the next eight points to increase the lead to 19-14. Two kills apiece from Megan Morningstar and Rebecca Nunge helped Notre Dame close out the second stanza with a 25-19 win to put the Irish one set away from the match victory.
Notre Dame closed out the match in fashion, taking the third and final frame by a final score of 25-17. The key stretch for the Irish came with Sydney Kuhn on the service line, as Notre Dame rattled off eight consecutive points to open up a commanding 17-7 advantage over Toledo. From there the Irish comfortably cruised to a 25-17 third set win to complete the 3-0 sweep of the Rockets.
PLAYERS OF THE MATCH
The junior duo of Morningstar and Nunge were incredibly efficient in the Notre Dame attack against Toledo, combining to post a hitting line of 14-0-23 for a hitting percentage of .609. Nunge finished the match with eight kills on 13 attempts, while Morningstar hammered out six kills on 10 attempts. Neither Nunge or Morningstar made an attacking error on the evening.
ND STAT OF THE MATCH
Notre Dame was more efficient in the attack than the Rockets in the showdown, as the Irish hit .243 as opposed to Toledo’s mark of .137. Both sides racked up 37 kills, however, the Irish made just 11 attack errors as opposed to Toledo’s 21. Notre Dame’s hitting percentage of .243 is the highest mark the team has recorded this season.
NOTES OF THE MATCH
- Notre Dame’s 6-0 start to the season is the best since the program began the 2005 campaign 7-0.
- The Irish remain unbeaten against Toledo in the all-time series history, as Notre Dame improves to 5-0 against the Rockets.
- Four of Notre Dame’s five victories over Toledo have come by a final score of 3-0.
- Three of Notre Dame’s six wins in 2017 have come by way of a sweep.
- Natalie Johnson has recorded at least one ace in all six matches this season and has accrued 17 aces in 2017. Johnson finished with a team-high three aces against the Rockets.
- Jemma Yeadon has recorded 10+ kills in all five matches she has played in this season.
- Sam Fry led the Irish with five blocks and has posted at least three blocks in five of six matches in 2017.
Notre Dame stays on the road, as the squad heads south to Conway, South Carolina for the Coastal Carolina Classic. The Irish take on the hosts Coastal Carolina on Friday, September 8 at 7 p.m. ET.
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Robby Hamman joined Fighting Irish Media as athletics communications assistant director in September 2016, coordinating efforts for the volleyball and men’s lacrosse program. Hamman is a 2010 graduate of Bethel College, where he earned bachelor’s degrees in sport management and business administration, and earned his master’s degree in business administration from Defiance College in 2013.