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Volleyball’s Rally Falls Short as ODU Drops Match to Notre Dame, 3-2

Bob Bradlee

NORFOLK, Va. – The Old Dominion volleyball team fought back to force a fifth set for the second time in as many days, but the Monarchs came up just short as the team fell 3-2 to Notre Dame on Day Two of the Quest for the Crown Tournament.
"This has been a big step for us," head coach Fred Chao said after the match. "I'm super proud that [the team] can be resilient. That's the nature of the game is that it's such a momentum sport. Every point matters. Sometimes you lose a cluster of points, but you've got to stand up there and make sure you are still playing the same game that got you there in the first place and then work for your cluster as well."
Notre Dame 3, ODU 2
Hailey Duncan scored 12 kills while hitting for .571 and Myah Conway also reached 12 kills on a .241 clip. Tessa Mati neared double figures with nine kills, Bailey Burgess was next with eight and Ashley Peroe finished her night with seven. Teresa Atilano tallied 39 assists and added four aces, three blocks and nine digs to her totals. Conway, Burgess, and Duncan led the blocking effort with four blocks each. At the back row, Jamie Bissmeyer and Anna Burkhardt recorded 13 and 10 digs, respectively.
As a team, ODU edged ND in hitting (.256 to .235) and in blocking (9-8).
The Monarchs (3-5) raced out to an early 8-2 lead in the opening set as a Bissmeyer service ace capped off a 5-0 run. Another five unanswered points gave the tournament hosts a 20-7 cushion. The Fighting Irish (3-4) showed some fight late, but a 4-0 run by the visitors wasn't enough as a block by Burgess and Conway gave the Monarchs the set, 25-14.
A lot of that early momentum was aided by the home court advantage. On the atmosphere tonight, Chao commented, "It was fantastic. It was one of those things where, coming out of the locker room, I said 'All of these people are here to support you and make sure that you have the right atmosphere. This is why we built this. To bring a team like Notre Dame in here and have everybody here yelling and screaming and cheering. Soak it in for a little bit.' So the team just came out here and they played that way. That's a good way to do it."
ND responded by winning the next two sets though, 25-16 and 25-20. In Set Two, Atilano assisted Burgess to help get the Monarchs withing 19-15, but a 5-0 push allowed the Irish close out the set. Set Three remained close for the first half as a ND attack error and a kill from Duncan trimmed the Irish lead to 13-12. However, the guests used a 4-0 spurt and didn't look back from there.
An Irish service ace got the visitors back within a point at 16-15 in the fourth set. ODU then grabbed the momentum as Conway put away a ball to ignite a 6-0 Monarch run. Duncan kept the match going as her kill gave ODU the set at 25-20.
The Monarchs went up 4-2 to open the decisive set, but four straight points allowed the Irish to wrestle away control at 7-5. Later, Atilano and Duncan denied a ND attack before Conway converted an attack to get ODU within a point at 12-11. That was as close as the Monarchs would get though. ND secured three out of the next four points to close out the match with a 15-12 decision.
On continuing with the team's resilience, Chao added, "I just think we keep going. We keep pushing on that, keep playing at this level and make some small improvements here and there. I think just some of the details that we keep trying to get better at in practice, it still needs to get better there. So that's where some of the frustration comes in, from individual players getting frustrated with themselves, because they know that we need to improve on those things. But overall, the attitude and the mindset are much more cohesive. Running the same group through and through now is going to help us in the long run."
Up Next
ODU rounds out its home tournament on Saturday as the Monarchs have a 3 p.m. meeting with East Carolina. The Pirates (3-5) started off their day with a five-set loss to the Irish but bounced back with a 3-1 victory over Navy. Tomorrow's match will be streamed on ESPN+ and live stats will also be available.
Fans can purchase 2022-23 Old Dominion voucher books online at For the cost of $50, you get 25 tickets that can be used for any regular season home game at the ODU Volleyball Center, ODU Soccer Complex or Bud Metheny Baseball Stadium.
Single-game tickets can also be purchased for $5 at the entrance to the ODU Volleyball Center.
Click here to purchase the 2022-23 ODU voucher book.