NOTRE DAME, Ind. — The University of Notre Dame volleyball team closed out the 2019 Golden Dome Invitational with a 3-1 victory over Bowling Green Saturday night at Purcell Pavilion. The Irish took the first two sets by scores of 25-19 and 25-14 before Bowling Green forced a fourth set with a 25-21 triumph in set three. The Irish clinched the 3-1 victory with a 25-9 decision in the fourth stanza.
Freshman Caroline Meuth led Notre Dame’s attack with 21 kills while Lauren Wenzel notched 11 kills with a .667 hitting percentage. Zoe Nunez collected 48 assists to push her total to 138 on the weekend.
With 23 digs, Madison Cruzado anchored an Irish defense that limited Bowling Green to a .062 hitting percentage in the contest. Charley Niego added 15 digs while Wenzel added seven blocks over the four sets of play.
Meuth and Wenzel were named to the 2019 Golden Dome Invitational All-Tournament Team for their performances over the weekend.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The sides opened play in an 8-8 tie before Bowling Green used a 3-0 spurt to take an 11-8 lead. Kills by Sydney Bent and Wenzel helped the Irish even the score again at 13-all. The opening stanza remained tight until a 4-0 Irish run, which included an ace and a kill by Meuth, staked the hosts a 23-18 lead. An ace by freshman Kiara Schmidt sealed the 25-19 set victory and a 1-0 lead for the Irish. As a team, Notre Dame notched 15 kills and a .407 hitting percentage in the frame.
Notre Dame led from start to finish en route to a dominating 25-14 win in the second set. Two kills by Meuth and an ace by Cruzado helped the Irish earn 6-1 lead to open the frame. Another pair of kills by Meuth pushed Notre Dame’s lead to 9-2 before the Falcons cut the advantage to 9-5. The Irish responded with four consecutive points to make the score 13-5. Notre Dame went on to earn a 20-10 advantage with another 4-0 streak, which included two more Meuth kills, before closing out the frame 25-14. The Irish held Bowling Green to a .000 hitting percentage in the stanza.
After the Falcons opened set three with a 7-5 lead, the Irish earned four straight points to earn a 9-7 advantage. Bowling Green earned 10 of the next 13 points to go back on top, 17-12. Kills by Wenzel, Niego and Bent spearheaded a 4-0 Irish run to make it 17-16. However, the Falcons responded with a 5-2 stretch to take a 22-18 advantage, and held on for the 25-21 win to force a fourth set.
A trio of kills by Meuth helped the Irish jump out to a 7-1 lead to open the fourth set. Bowling Green worked to cut its deficit to 11-7 before the Irish dominated the rest of the way with a 13-2 run to clinch a 25-9 set win and 3-1 match victory. Notre Dame hit .423 in the stanza while limiting the Falcons to a -.069 mark.
Notre Dame (2-1) returns to action on Wednesday (Sept. 4) at home against Valparaiso. That match is slated for 7 p.m. ET and will be televised live on the ACC Network. For tickets, click here.
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