(NEWS RELEASE) -- Lola Arslanbekova had 11 kills and 15 digs to lead the No. 12-ranked University of Louisville to a 25-19, 25-11, 25-19 sweep of Middle Tennessee at the Louisville Invitational at the KFC Yum! Center Friday night.
“We were anchored by our middles tonight,” said U of L head coach Anne Kordes. “ Tanya Lukyanenko did a great job tonight, playing in a position she hasn’t played all year due to Gwen Rucker not feeling well tonight. I was pleased with her offense and her blocking. Our other middle, Brooke Mattingly, was amazing, hitting .462.”
U of L hit .327 with three aces and seven blocks to boost its record to 9-1. Middle Tennessee hit .082 and had no aces and just two blocks. Emily Juhl and Tanya Lukyanenko combine for four blocks each. MTSU was led by Chelsea Ross’ 13 kills.
Middle Tennessee took the lead early in the first set , going up 13-9. The Cards tied at 17 and then went ahead for got at 20-19, scoring five straight after that to win the set 25-19. Brooke Mattingly paced the Cards with three kills and a block. Emily Juhl chipped in three blocks. Tanya Lukyanenko, filling in for an ailing Gwen Rucker, had three kills and two blocks.
U of L used .389 hitting to hold Middle Tennessee at arm’s length, taking a 13-7 lead in the second set, forcing a Blue Raider timeout. The break had little effect on the Cards as they had a 7-1 run to spread the lead 21-10 and then ran off four straight to end the set with a 25-11 win to take a 2-0 set lead into the break.
U of L ran out to a 18-11 lead, but Middle Tennessee answered with a 4-0 run that pulled them within three at 18-15, but then committed five errors to put the Cards up 23-17. U of L got its final two points on a kill by Tanya Lukyanenko and a tip by Katie George for the 25-19 win.