ASHLAND, Ohio – On Saturday (Sept. 17) afternoon the AU volleyball team finished a 4-1 homestand with a straight-set sweep of Michigan Tech, 25-19, 25-14, 25-17, at Kates Gymnasium.
The Eagles (6-3, 4-1 GLIAC) were led offensively by freshman Kathy Fletcher (West Chicago, Ill./Community), who totaled 12 kills on just 16 attacks with no errors. Her .750 hitting percentage tied for the fourth-best in AU history for a single match.
The Eagles never trailed on their way to wins in the first two sets. The Eagles hit a blistering .361 for the match, going 44-for-97 with just nine errors. They held the Huskies (2-8, 0-5 GLIAC) to a .081 hitting percentage.
Ashland trailed early in the third set, 11-6. Freshman Alyx Crislip (Louisville, Ohio) put down a kill to make it 11-7 to start a huge 11-1 run that gave AU a 17-12 lead. Much of that rally came with sophomore Baley Bernthisel (Grand Rapids, Ohio/Otsego) serving. The final three points came on kills by Crislip, junior setter Crystal Elliott (Canal Winchester, Ohio) and sophomore Kate Eckels (Loveland, Ohio/Mount Notre Dame).
The Eagles never looked back as Fletcher finished the match with two straight kills. She is now hitting .269 on the season and has 73 kills.
The offensive distribution didn't stop with Fletcher as four other players finished with at least four kills. Junior Brittany Snider (Olmsted Falls, Ohio) and Crislip (.467) had eight kills apiece, while senior Anesia Benton (Lima, Ohio/Senior) added six with a .417 hitting percentage. Sophomore Susie Jonas (Harrison, Ohio) put down four kills.
Elliott had three kills and 31 assists as the main distributor. She also had 10 digs for a double-double. Elliott, Crislip and Eckels each had two aces. Senior libero Arian Martin (Independence, Ohio) dug out 11 attacks. Freshman Maureen Johnson (Crystal Lake, Ill./South) appeared in her first collegiate match and registered her first career kill.
The Huskies were led by Jena Karkos, who finished with six kills. Kenzie Tonn had 11 digs and Ciara Sebelius handed out 13 assists.
The Eagles will hit the road for the first time since the season-opening UIndy Invitational when they travel to Tiffin on Friday (Sept. 23) for a 7 p.m. first serve. AU finishes the weekend at Ohio Dominican on Sept. 24.