Volleyball Falls To Toledo, 3-0, In Michigan Pepsi Challenge Opener
Sept. 12, 2008
ANN ARBOR, Mich. The Auburn (4-5) offense struggled in the team's opening match of the Michigan Volleyball Pepsi Challenge, posting a .005 attack percentage in the 3-0 (20-25, 14-25, 23-25) loss to Toledo (3-4).
Auburn led early in the first set, but Toledo bounced back to steal the 25-20 win. The Rockets continued the momentum in the second set with a 25-14 win before completing the sweep in the third set, 25-23.
"We were unprepared for this match, we did not come out ready to play," said head coach Wade Benson. "Our starters were not getting it done and when we went to the bench, who has been great up to this point in coming into matches and giving a good spark, they could not do it either."
The loss breaks a four-match winning streak for the Tigers after wins over Bethune-Cookman, Presbyterian, Georgia Southern and Troy.
Jonelle Wallace led Auburn in the match with seven kills, hitting .385. Jessica Glover followed with five kills while Chanelle Clark chipped in three. Glover led the Tiger defense with eight digs, followed by sophomore libero Liz Crouch with six.
Stephanie Kersting and Sarah Wilson led the Rockets with eight kills each while Kersting posted a .462 attack percentage. She also led the Toledo defense, finishing the match with eight digs.
"We cannot dwell on this match," said Benson. "We have two more tomorrow, one against a very good Michigan team, so we have to take what we can from this, learn from it and move on."
Auburn returns to action Saturday in the Michigan Pepsi Challenge. The Tigers take on Oakland at 12:30 p.m. CT and finish up with the host Wolverines at 6:30 p.m. CT. Fans can follow the action live with GameTracker at www.AuburnTigers.com.
Auburn jumped out quickly in the first set, scoring the first five points for a 5-0 lead. Toledo did not back down, though, and battled back to take the lead at the 11-10 mark - a lead the Rockets would not give up en route to the 25-20 victory. The Tigers were able to cut the lead to one at the 20-19 mark, but Toledo again pulled away for the win.
Wallace led the Tigers in the set with four of Auburn's nine kills. Crouch led the AU defense with three digs.
Toledo rode the momentum from the first set into the second, racking up a quick 10-2 lead. The Rockets built the lead to 13 at the 20-7 mark before the Tigers could put any kind of offensive run together. Auburn out-scored Toledo 7-5 from that point, but it was too late as UT cruised to the 25-14 win.
Mellor had three of Auburn's six kills in the set to lead the team. Glover led the defensive effort with four digs.
Auburn took the early lead in the third set, but Toledo came right back and took its first lead at the 5-4 mark. Neither team was able to build much of a lead until the Rockets went on a 5-1 run to take a four-point lead at 17-13. Auburn was able to come back and tie the set at 23-23, but Toledo's Liz Sundberg came up with a kill and a block assist to give the Rockets the 25-23 win.
Glover led Auburn in the set with five kills and three digs. Clark and Michigan native Emily Knuth also contributed three digs each.
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