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Volleyball Falls to VCU, 3-0

Bruce Butler

NORFOLK, Va. – VCU used 41 kills, including 10 from Lauren King to hand the Monarchs its first loss of the season. The Rams (2-0) put together three-straight winning sets on Saturday afternoon at the ODU Volleyball Center.
Alessia Sgherza led the way for the Monarchs with 12 kills, while Madelyn Grunza and Ashley Peroe both notched service aces for ODU. Teresa Atilano once again paced the Monarchs (1-1) in assists, recording 22 of the Monarchs 31.
"Right now we're talking about learning our lessons as we go, win or lose. I think our team has learned something from this and we're going to come out with a fresh opportunity to learn the lessons we need to," said head coach Fred Chao.
"It's going to come down to are we going to win the serve and pass battle? Are we going to win the outside hitter battle? And are our setters going to do their job to bring the middles in effectively."
How it Went
Set One
VCU opened up the match with the first point off a Monarch hitting error. ODU answered off a Hailey Duncan kill, who notched nine on the day. ODU kept the first set close, but the Rams mounted a 7-1 run that gave them a 21-15 advantage. The Monarchs responded when Valentina Culaciati and Atilano knocked down a block but VCU went on to win the set, 25-19.
Set Two
The second set played just as close as the first between the Monarchs and the Rams. VCU once again took control nearly the whole set but a Sgherza kill tied up the game, 7-7. The two squads went on to trade points, until the Rams used a 3-0 run to open up its biggest lead of the set, 17-12, which forced ODU to take a timeout. The Monarchs came back to score a point after the stoppage but VCU pushed ahead to mirror the first match, 25-19.
Set Three
VCU dictated much of the third set, opening the frame with a 6-2 run over the Monarchs. After a pair of Monarch kills, ODU trailed by just two points. From there, the Rams took over via an 11-2 run. A VCU service error allowed ODU to get back on the board, but the Rams won the final set wire-to-wire, 25-12.
Up Next
On Sunday, ODU will welcome Delaware State to the ODU Volleyball Center at 3 p.m. Sunday's match against the Hornets will be open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis with limited attendance. Doors open one hour prior to the start of the match.


  • The Center will have limited capacity (Approx. 200) with socially-distanced seating – Seating is first come, first served.
  • Entrance will open to patrons 60 minutes prior to the start of the match and is located at the NE corner of the Jim Jarrett Athletic Admin. Bldg.
  • Matches that are open to the public this season do not require a ticket and are free admittance, based on availability. 
  • Concessions will be available for purchase
  • COVID-19 Guidelines for attending this season:
    • Mask required for entry. No gaiters
    • Maintain social distancing while in the facility
    • No large gatherings inside the facility (10+)
    • Please sit in the stands in the designated socially-distanced seat locations
    • Wash hands frequently

Visit the ODU Volleyball Fan Page for all the information.

Monarch Fan Cutouts
Due to popular demand, the Old Dominion University athletics department has made Monarch Fan Cutouts available for volleyball.
The "Monarch Cutouts", presented by Chartway, are available for $59 and will be in attendance at all home games for the 2021 season. Photos of the fan cutouts will be posted on social media throughout the season. 
To order a fan cutout, click here.

Follow @ODUVB on Twitter and @oduvb on Instagram for the latest updates on the Monarchs.