MEMPHIS – The University of Connecticut volleyball team swept Memphis (25-20, 25-20, 25-22) on Friday night at the Elma Roane Fieldhouse in an American Athletic Conference battle. With the victory, the Huskies improve to 12-10 (6-5, The American) while Tigers drop to 14-10 (5-6, The American).
As a team, UConn earned a .241 hitting percentage and recorded eight blocks. The Huskies have won the last nine sets and earned their fifth-straight win.
Junior Jade Strawberry (Tallahassee, Fla.) tallied her eighth double-double of the season with 10 kills and 16 digs. Senior Immanuella Anagu (Culver City, Calif.) notched 10 kills on 14 swings for a .714 hitting percentage along with four block assists. Senior captain Erika Thomas (Ocoee, Fla.) added seven kills to the mix. Sophomores Tosin Adeniyi (Springfield, Ill.) and Danielle Cabel (Bettendorf, Iowa) had six kills apiece. Junior Rebecca Rivera (Mississauga, Ontario) totaled a match-high 19 helpers while redshirt-junior Jessika Long (Sandy, Utah) had 15 assists. Freshman Kennedy Arundel (Chicago, Ill.) posted 10 digs on the night.
The first set started with UConn and Memphis exchanging points until consecutive attack errors by the Tigers and back-to-back kills from Adeniyi gave the Huskies a 10-6 lead. Memphis burned it first timeout of the match after Thomas and Anagu got together at the net for the block to push UConn ahead 14-10. After the break, Anagu laid down a spike before teaming up with Cason for the rejection. Strawberry tallied the kill and freshman Iman McGary (Rockford, Ill.) served up the ace to extend UConn’s advantage to 19-12. Cason’s kill gave the Huskies a 24-18 lead and Thomas wrapped up the set, 25-20.
Once again, both teams traded points to get the second set going but three-straight kills by Strawberry handed UConn a 12-9 edge and forced Memphis to the bench. The Tigers had to use another timeout after Cabel added consecutive kills to boost the Huskies lead to 16-10. Memphis tried to rally, stringing together three points off of UConn errors. Anagu’s spike along with blocks from Adeniyi and Strawberry got the Huskies out to a 24-19 advantage. Strawberry delivered the final swing for UConn to claim the second set, 25-20.
Memphis took a 8-6 lead to begin the third set but UConn managed to lock the score at 10 on a kill by Thomas. The Huskies kept the momentum going, taking a three-point edge but the Tigers tied the score again at 14-14. The two squads went back-and-forth, knotting the set three more times until UConn went ahead 19-17 on kills by Thomas and Anagu while Memphis called for time. Back on the court, Thomas and Adeniyi stuffed the ball at the net and Strawberry notched the kill for a 22-18 upper hand. Memphis tallied three-straight points off two Husky errors and an ace to get within two. Cabel recorded the solo block to get the set point opportunity and Memphis’ service error closed out the set and handed UConn a 25-22 victory.
The Huskies are back in action on Sunday, Nov. 1 at noon when they visit Cincinnati.
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