Ithaca, NY-The Juniata women's volleyball took down Stevens, 3-1 (25-14, 25-18, 22-25, 25-21) Friday evening in Ben Light Gymnasium on the first day of the Bomber Invitational.
Marybeth Weihbrecht (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Cumberland Valley) had 13 kills, a solo block and a block assist, Morgan Edwards (Lancaster, Pa./Penn Manor) tallied 13 kills and added a solo block and a block assist while Victoria Taylor (Middletown, Del./Delaware Military Academy) notched 13 kills along with a solo block and three block assists. Marie Gonsar (New Castle, Pa./Shenango H.S.) had 11 kills, three aces and 13 digs, Dejia Danhi (Ashburn, Va./Stone Bridge) totaled nine kills and four block assists and Makenna Hallager (Glenolden, Pa./Merion Mercy Academy) had five service aces to go with 10 digs. Katie Byrne (Annapolis, Md./Broadneck) amassed 16 digs with seven assists while Alyssa Tavera (Whittier, Calif./La Salle HS) handed out a career-high 50 assists along with nine digs.
The first set was tight early as an Eagle service error pulled the Ducks within one at 9-8. Back to back Stevens attack errors help spark an 8-0 surge by Juniata as they led 17-8 and cruised from there. Juniata hit .393 as a team in the set while holding Stevens -.067.
The second set was tighter most of the way before kills by Edwards and Gonsar on either side of a Stevens timeout helped Juniata take a six-point lead. Weihbrecht scored the final two points of the set as JC won 25-18.
The third set saw the Eagles hold a narrow lead with Stevens nipping at their heels the whole way. A Danhi kill put Juniata back up by one at 16-15, but that was the final lead of the set. Trailing 19-21, JC managed to tie the score off back to back Stevens mistakes, but the Ducks managed to narrowly win, 22-25.
Stevens had ideas of forcing a fifth set as Juniata trailed a few times early and never led by more than two. With the score tied at 19-19, Danhi put down a kill and Taylor added two of her own to make it 21-20 JC. A Stevens kill tied it at 21 all, but an Edwards kill followed by a Gallagher ace and another Edwards kill made it match point. Hallager served up one more ace to end the match.
Tomorrow, Juniata will face #2 ranked Calvin at 1:30 and #8 ranked Ithaca at 4:00.