Senior outside hitter Emily Juhl had 13 kills and an ace to lead the University of Louisville volleyball team to a 25-13, 25-22, 25-15 win over rival Cincinnati to stay unbeaten in the American Athletic Conference Friday night in Cincinnati.
U of L (11-7, 7-0) hit .330 and had 43 digs, led by Maya McClendon’s 14. UC, 0-7 and 0-20 in AAC, hit .092 but outblocked the Cards 6-2 despite being at a height disadvantage. Janelle Jenkins added nine kills and senior Randi Ewing hit .556 with six kills and a block.
“Randi continues to pace us with her high hitting percentage,” said U of L coach Anne Kordes. “I thought our libero, Caitlin Welch, did a phenomenal job passing to the point that they were avoiding her as much as possible. This is such a good rivalry and I see them gaining momentum and I am banking on them being very dangerous when we meet up with them again at our place. “
U of L ran out to a 16-5 lead early in the first set propelled by a 7-0 run served by Emily Juhl. UC struggled to get back in the set but .042 hitting did not help the cause. The Cards’ .417 hitting and three aces proved too much for the Bearcat squad that starts five freshmen.
Cincinnati built a 7-2 lead early before the Cards tied at 10 and took their first lead at 15-14 on a kill by Juhl. UC countered and retook the lead at 17-16 and then again at 19-18 both times on U of L hitting errors. The Cards tied at 20 and then used a 5-2 run for the 25-22 win. Neither team could get on track with hitting with U of L owning the slight margin of .133 to .049 in a set marked by long, scrambling rallies.
In the third set, UC cut the lead to one at 9-8 but fell victim to a 10-3 run to go down 19-11. Jenkins and Juhl each had two kills apiece to go up 22-13 and ran UC out of timeouts. After trading points, U of L got to set point on a kill by Randi Ewing and freshman Javoni Faucette put away the set and match winner.