Volleyball Wins a Five-Set Thriller Against Duquesne

Volleyball Wins a Five-Set Thriller Against Duquesne

Box Score (PDF) l Post-match interviews (video)

PHILADELPHIA - Gabriella Matautia knocked down a match-high 23 kills along with recording 13 digs in helping lead Temple volleyball to a thrilling, 3-2 win at home against Duquesne on Friday afternoon. The Owls (8-19, 4-10) looked strong after taking the first two sets 25-23 and 25-20, but Duquesne (17-11, 7-7) came back to win the next two, 25-20 and 25-17. In the decisive fifth set, the Owls pulled out a narrow, 15-13 win to take the match.

Elyse Burkert and Collin Wallace recorded 14 kills apiece, and both notched double-doubles as Wallace tied for the team lead with 19 digs and Burkert tallied 11 digs. Chelsea Tupuola also recorded 19 digs, and Tiffany Connatser notched a double-double with 47 assists and 12 digs.

Allison Foschia led Duquesne with 18 kills, while Patti Abshire led the Dukes with a match-high 27 digs.

The first set was an intense one as the two teams battled the entire way, through 13 ties and five lead changes. Neither team ever led by more than two until the Owls took a 24-22, but they squandered one set point on a service error before Duquesne served up an error right back to put the match at 1-0 in favor of Temple. Matautia was the leader for the Owls with six kills and six digs in the first set.

Temple held a lead more consistently in the second set, that saw just three ties the whole way. The Owls led by just a point at 19-18, but closed out the set on a 6-2 run that included three kills from Matautia including the final blow that put Temple up 2-0 for the match. As a team, Temple displayed some of its best hitting of the season in the second set with 17 kills and just two errors as the Owls out-hit the Dukes .366 to .270.

The third set stayed fairly close, thanks in part to Wallace who kept Temple in the game defensively with seven digs, but Duquesne out-hit Temple .361 to .136 and made a late run to take the set.

Temple fell in a big hole in the fourth set that never seemed in doubt, although the Owls did make a four-point run at the end to hold off a number of set points for the Dukes.

Temple regained momentum quickly in the fifth set and took a 4-0 lead, but Duquesne came back to tie the set for the first of four times at 7-7. After a 10-10 tie the Owls came on strong with a 4-0 run that included three kills from Burkert, but the Dukes held off three match points before Matautia knocked down the match-winning kill.

The Owls will play their final match of the season at home on Sunday, Nov. 13 at 12:30 p.m. against Xavier for Senior Day.
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