Volleyball Gets First C-USA Win Over DePaul, 3-0
Oct. 25, 2002
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The University of Memphis volleyball team (16-10, 1-5 C-USA) found its way into the win column with a 3-0 win over DePaul (5-10, 1-6 C-USA) in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse, Friday.
The Tigers had one of their most balanced offensive nights of the season, starting in game one when both Tiara Gilkey (St. Louis, Mo./Pattonsville) and Brittany Barnett (Dallas, Texas/Lake Highlands) each downed five kills. Those kills, combined with two service aces from Nancy Nellans (South Bend, Ind./St. Josephs) kept Memphis just far enough ahead of DePaul to help them to a game one 30-25 win.
Gilkey took over the offense in game two, downing seven kills and hitting .417 while helping Memphis hit a match-high .270 compared to a .161 hitting percentage for DePaul. The Blue Demons' Lara Marks matched Gilkey kill-for-kill, downing seven of her eventual 14 kills in the second game, but Marks got very little help from the rest of her teammates in the second game and she was the only Blue Demon to hit above the .000 mark in the second. Memphis took the second game, 30-26.
Memphis came out and focused on closing out the match in the third game. The Tigers got four kills from Gilkey and got three kills from Nan Kimbrell (Lafayette, La./Episcopal School of Acadiana) and two from Kristen Hardee (Sante Fe, Texas/Sante Fe) to keep DePaul on their heels on defense. Memphis won the third game, 30-22.
Gilkey finished with 16 kills, while Barnett added 12. Gilkey and setter Heather Watts (Salt Lake City, Utah/Skyline) each had 10 digs in the win, while Watts led the offense with 42 assists. Senior middle Brooke Chrisman (Katy, Texas/Katy) led the Tiger defense with five block assists, giving her a total of 12 blocks in the last two matches. Chrisman also hit .385 and downed five kills in the win.
"This was a very balanced offensive effort for us," Head Coach Carrie Yerty said. "It was good to have Tiara back (after not hitting double-digit kills in the last 4 conference games) and Brooke did an outstanding job both in blocking and in getting into our offense. This was a game that if you looked at the records, we're both in the same situation. Both teams have six freshmen and are trying to build and be competitive."
Marks led the Blue Demonds with 14 kills, the only DePaul player to hit double-digit kills. Senior Kate Engel added nine kills and led the defense with 10 digs, while Janet Goreham added seven kills, but committed seven attack errors to hit .000 for the match.
The Tigers remain at home and face Marquette in a 7 p.m. match, Saturday, while DePaul travels to St. Louis to face the Billikens at 7 p.m.
Yerty is looking for the Tigers to maintain the same level of aggressiveness for Saturday. "In order to have a chance to beat Marquette, we need to keep the same offensive balance and serve tough," Yerty said. "Heather set well tonight, obviously, but we'll need to again follow our game plan if we want to continue to find success in our league."