Chestnut Hill, MA - Janelle Jenkins had 17 kills, 15 digs and five blocks to lead the University of Louisville volleyball team a 27-29, 25-23, 25-17, 26-24 win at Boston College to secure a share of the ACC crown Wednesday afternoon in Chestnut Hill.
"The stats might not exactly show how different players stepped up at different times to make a difference," said UofL head coach Anne Kordes. "I am proud of our team and despite this phenomenal run, we still have a big, big opponent in Syracuse on Friday."
The Cardinals become the first UofL women's team to win an ACC title which they can clinch outright on Friday with a win over Syracuse. UNC is also 17-2 and handed the Cards their only loss. The No. 15 ranked Cards move to 18-1 in the ACC and 24-5 overall. Boston College drops to 11-20 and 3-16 in the league. The Cardinals had four hitters in double digit kills with Erin Fairs adding 15 and a career high four aces, Tess Clark had 11 kills, hitting .579 with six blocks and Maggie DeJong pitched in 10 kills and two blocks.
In the first set, Boston pushed the Cards with .314 hitting and a pair of blocks. The set had 16 ties and four lead changes. Both teams had two set point opportunities but a kill by BC's Julia Topor and a miss by Erin Fairs gave the Eagles the 28-27 win. UofL hit .231, had an ace but was outdug 26-25.
"BC played great and played like they had nothing to lose," said Kordes. "We played like we were protecting the lead and you just can't play tight. They forced us to make errors by just swinging hard and serving hard."
The second set was marked by out-of-system volleyball by both teams. UofL hit .118 and BC was at .089. Similarly, there were 10 ties and five lead changes. It was a 6-0 run under Erin Fairs' serving that put the Cards up 16-13 and forced the Eagles to burn their final timeout. BC pushed back and took a 20-18 lead. Fairs scored twice as did Tess Clark along with Jenkins to take a 23-22 lead. BC scored on a Katie George service error and then a Fairs ace gave UofL the 25-23 win.
After the break, the Cards played neater in-system ball led by Janelle Jenkins' seven kills. The Cards hit .306 in the set and had four blocks. A 5-1 run midway through the set gave UofL a 17-12 lead. BC rallied to within one at 17-16 but then the Cards pulled away on a 7-2 run to win 25-17 and take a 2-1 set lead.
In the fourth set there were 10 ties, but Louisville never trailed. The Eagles tied at 22 on a kill by Katty Workman but the Cards answered on a kill by Tess Clark. Workman missed to give UofL set point at 24-22 but BC held off the Cards with a kill by McKenna Goss and then an error by Philo tied at 24, Maggie DeJong scored on a slide and then a net call on the Eagles gave the Cards the 26-24 win.