The Emory volleyball team saw a three-match win streak come to an end Tuesday evening as it came out on the short end of a road contest at Berry College. The 20th-ranked Vikings boosted their overall slate to 15-2 following a 3-1 (19-25, 25-15, 27-25, 25-13) triumph over the No. 12 Eagles who slipped to 13-5.
Emory got off to a solid start in the South Region clash, hitting .263 (16-6—38) and using six kills from junior Morgan McKnight and four by sophomore Leah Saunders in claiming the first set. However, the Emory attack would only hit .051 over the next three matches, ending the night with an attack percentage of .103 (44-28—155) compared to Berry's .225 (49-15—151). The Eagles finished with a 77-73 advantage in digs while the Vikings registered an 8-3 margin in total blocks.
Saunders ended up leading the squad with 11 kills, her seventh double-figure outing of the campaign, while senior Karissa Dzurik totaled 10 terminations, the 11th time this year she registered double digits in that department. Senior setter Mady Arles rang up 38 assists and added 11 digs and three block assists to the cause while junior Elyse Thompson paced the Eagles with 17 digs.
With the match tied at 1-1, the third set saw the Eagles go on a 6-2 run, highlighted by a pair of kills from Saunders, that snapped a 14-14 deadlock and gave them a 20-14 lead. Block assists by Arles and senior Sydney Leimbach put Emory ahead by a 22-19 count, and it maintained a 23-20 margin following a Vikings' service error. Berry accounted for the next two points, but a kill by sophomore Maggie Rimmel put the Eagles one point shy of taking the set. After Berry fought back to knot the score at 24-24, Emory took a one-point lead after an Berry hitting miscue, allowing it to serve for the set. But a service error started Berry on a 3-0 set-ending run, giving it a 2-1 match lead.
In the fourth set, Berry rattled off six straight points early to bolt to an 8-2 lead. An ace by Thompson drew the Eagles to within five points at 14-9, but the Vikings came away with five of the next six points to take a commanding 19-10 cushion en route to earning their 23rd straight home win.
Emory will now gear up for the University Athletic Association Round Robin II this Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 13-14) on the campus of Carnegie Mellon University.