Oct. 1, 2017
By Robby Hamman
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Notre Dame (11-4) got back on track on Sunday afternoon, defeating No. 21 Florida State (8-4) in a five-set thriller by a final of 3-2 (25-21, 23-25, 19-25, 25-12, 15-12) inside Purcell Pavilion. The win is Notre Dame’s third over a ranked opponent this season, previously defeating No. 24 Ohio State and No. 23 Michigan State.
Sophomore Jemma Yeadon had a day to remember, finishing with a career-high 24 kills to lead the Irish. The trio of Sam Fry, Rebecca Nunge and Lauren Woodard each finished with 10 kills to propel Notre Dame to the victory.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Irish came out ready to play in the first frame, jumping out to an early lead that they never relinquished. Notre Dame led by as many as seven points in the set at 14-7 before going on to win by a score of 25-21. Notre Dame’s defense was exceptional, holding Florida State to an attacking percentage of -.027 in the set.
The Seminoles regrouped in the second stanza and controlled most of the set. Florida State held a 22-15 lead and then the Irish staged a comeback. Notre Dame won seven of the next eight points to cut the visitor’s advantage to just one at 23-22 but Florida State was able to do just enough to close out the frame with a 25-23 victory to level the match at 1-1.
Florida State carried its momentum from the second set into the third, building an early lead at 5-1. The Seminoles did not trail for the rest of the set, as Notre Dame was unable to put a big run together to pressure the visitors. Florida State took the set by a score of 25-19 to grab a 2-1 lead in the match.
Notre Dame found another level of play in the fourth set and dominated the Seminoles en route to a 25-12 win to level the match at 2-2. The Irish held Florida State to just four kills in the entire fourth set, while Notre Dame put down 15. Lauren Woodard came off the bench to play a big role in the frame, registering six kills on 14 attempts to spark the Irish attack.
The Irish were not going to be denied the win on Sunday, as the team played the fifth set with passion and confidence. Yeadon hammered four kills in the first five points to give Notre Dame an early 4-1 lead. The Seminoles rallied and took a one-point advantage at 7-6. The Irish then called on Woodard who delivered by reeling off four straight kills to put the squad on top for good at 10-7. Notre Dame closed out the match with a 15-12 win in the fifth to seal the comeback victory at 3-2.
HEAD COACH JIM MCLAUGHLIN’S TAKE
On the team’s resiliency…
“We are in this thing together. Going back a match we let one get away. Everybody contributed to this win and I told them that everyone had to be better, including the coaches, and we were. We responded and we kind of did it the Notre Dame way. We grinded and played consistent. I told them the worst thing you can do is not be who you are and today we were Notre Dame for sure.
On Jemma Yeadon’s performance
“Like in practice, we are solving problems. We have to do that in the match. Jemma for sure managed her game and solved some problems. She got it going and hit over .300 the last half of the match. Just good composure by her.”
PLAYER OF THE MATCH
Yeadon had a career day in the victory, finishing with a personal record 24 kills. The sophomore sensation also added 16 digs, five blocks and an ace to cap off her remarkable performance. Yeadon’s 24 kills are the most for an Irish player this season. In the shortened fifth set alone Yeadon tallied seven kills.
ND STAT OF THE MATCH
Notre Dame’s attack came alive in the fourth and fifth sets, as the Irish racked up 29 kills on 62 attempts, while only making five errors for an attacking percentage of .387. Yeadon paced the Irish with 11 kills in the final two sets while Woodard added 10. Senior Caroline Holt was excellent in distribution, totaling 25 assists in the two frames and finishing with a season-high 59 for the match.
NOTES OF THE MATCH
- Notre Dame improves to 8-1 on the season when playing at home.
- The Irish are 3-1 on the season against ranked opponents.
- Notre Dame posted 12 team blocks against the Seminoles and have now recorded 10+ team blocks in 10 matches this season.
- The Irish had four players record 15+ digs against the Seminoles, marking the first time the team has accomplished the feat since doing so against Louisville on September 23, 2012.
- DeJarld tallied 20+ digs for the 12th time this season with 29.
- DeJarld led the team with three aces and has now recorded at least three aces in three matches in 2017.
- Natalie Johnson became the 15th player in program history to reach 1,000 digs for her career. Johnson finished with 15 digs and has 1,008 for her career.
- Morningstar tied her career high in blocks with 11 to lead the team.
- Caroline Holt notched her sixth double-double this season with a season-high 59 assists and 16 digs.
- Yeadon has recorded at least 10 kills in all 13 matches she has played in during the 2017 season.
- Yeadon notched her 10th double-double in 2017 (24 kills, 16 digs).
Notre Dame hits the road next weekend, as it travels to the state of Virginia for a pair of ACC matches. The Irish take on Virginia at 7 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 6 and then face Virginia Tech at noon on Sunday, Oct. 8.
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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.