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Volleyball Splits Sun Belt Series With Louisiana

Harrison Parker

NORFOLK, Va. – Louisiana spoiledOld Dominion volleyball's Halloween Night on Friday as the Monarchs dropped the Sun Belt series finale to the Ragin' Cajuns, 3-1.

"We had a tough night from a passing standpoint," said head coach Fred Chao. "Louisiana did what they needed to do to knock us off our game. Something that we've got to keep looking at is what our stamina looks like for day two. We're starting to put together a solid first night, we've just got to keep doing it. I think we played some solid volleyball, it's just the times when we really needed to dial it in and focus on some passing, it got away from us."

Louisiana 3, ODU 1
LeeAnne Lowery scored a kill and followed with a solo block to give the Monarchs (10-14, 2-8 Sun Belt) a 9-7 lead in the first set. However, Louisiana then rattled off four-straight points to pull ahead. A 7-1 swing made it 22-15 in favor of the Cajuns (13-11, 4-6), and the visitors held on for a 25-18 total.

ODU could not get started in the second set as the Monarchs dug themselves a 12-0 hole. But the home team chipped away at the Louisiana lead and fought all the way back to within 23-20 as Teresa Atilano assisted Bailey Burgess before recording a solo block on the next rally. The Monarchs couldn't complete the comeback though as the set went to the Cajuns, 25-21.   

In the third set, ODU again found itself playing catch-up as the Monarchs trailed 11-5. A Louisiana service error and an Elisa Maggi then sparked a 7-1 run as the hosts pulled even at 12-12. After another tie at 16-16, a Louisiana attack error and a solo block by Maggi allowed ODU to go up, 18-16. The teams traded points the rest of the way as ODU kept the match going with a 25-23 decision.

Burgess and Atilano denied a Cajun attack to make it a 9-8 ODU lead in the fourth set. Louisiana scored four unanswered to wrestle away control, and Burgess responded with a kill and an ace to cut the deficit to one at 12-11. Unfortunately for the Monarchs, Louisiana put together a 10-0 run that put the set out of reach. The Cajuns claimed a 25-16 tally to bring the match to a close.

ODU's attack was paced by Myah Conway's 16 kills, with Lowery and Maggi following with seven kills each. Atilano tallied 32 assists with two aces and Conway, Maggi and Burgess served one each. On defense, Lowery again led the blocking effort with six blocks. Conway, Burgess and Tessa Mati contributed three blocks apiece while Kilpatrick and Conway both finished with nine digs.

Up Next
ODU will be in Boone, North Carolina next Thursday and Friday, Oct. 26-27 for a Sun Belt East Division meeting with the App State Mountaineers.