DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The streak continues: Jacksonville University volleyball swept Bethune-Cookman, 3-0, on the road Tuesday evening in the final nonconference road match to extend the all-time series to 52-0 in favor of the Dolphins.
"We were excited to play tonight. Nobody said anything before the match about our record against Bethune-Cookman, but knowing we were going into the match undefeated all-time against them, we knew there was a lot of pride on the line not only for our group but for the legacy of our program," stated first year head coach Evan Muys following the match.
"We had players rise to the occasion today. We served and passed well against a scrappy, defensive team. It was a great opportunity to help prepare us for our road trip this weekend."
Jacksonville (4-21) opened the first set on a 7-1 run, sparked by a service ace from Morgan Dees, followed by a solo block and a pair of kills off the hand of Hannah Marchand, and finally capped by kills from Hailey Devlin and Mallory Mattingly to force the hosts to call a timeout. The Wildcats (13-14) scored three of the next four, but Jacksonville extended its lead to 10, 15-5, highlighted by a pair of aces from Mattingly and an impressive block from Madison Rayam and Sara Dyslin to stop the Wildcat momentum. A 6-1 rally brought BC-U back within five, 16-11 and the teams traded points. However, things quickly turned gritty as the hosts closed the gap on a 5-1 run and later, brought it within one, 24-23, before Marchand sealed the set win with a kill, 25-23.
The Dolphins carried that momentum into the second set with a 6-2 advantage, as Tori Reiser recorded just the second kill of her career. A 4-1 Wildcat rally pulled BC-U within one, 8-7, but the Dolphins extended their lead behind back-to-back aces from Mattingly at the service line, 20-13. A late 4-0 run brought the Wildcats within two, 23-21, but the Dolphins put the set away for a 2-0 lead, 25-21.
Back-to-back 5-1 runs early on kept the Dolphins rolling in the third as they opened the set with a 12-5 advantage. Though BC-U pressured with a pair of 3-0 runs to pull within two, 14-12, the Dolphins never gave up and persevered behind the leadership of Dyslin's nine kills in the third set. A 6-1 run extended Jacksonville's lead to 20-14 before the teams' gritty play once again showed out with exchanging points as the Dolphins came away with the final 25-19 win.
One of three Dolphins with double-digit kills, Dyslin finished the match with 11 kills, tied Petersen's match-high four blocks, and added a pair of digs for good measure. Marchand led the visitors with 12 kills and two blocks, while Mattingly finished the day with 10 kills, seven digs, and a match-high five aces.
Notably, Devlin neared her teammates with eight kills and six digs, while Petersen posted 37 assists in the effort. Meanwhile, Natalie Wehner led with a match-high 22 digs as Dees chipped in seven for the Green and White.
The Dolphins close out their final road series of the regular season this weekend, beginning Friday evening at NJIT (7 p.m.) followed by a Sunday afternoon matinee match at North Alabama (2 p.m.).