Sept. 29, 2007
CLEMSON, SC – Tiger defensive specialist Sue Eckman served an ace for Clemson’s match point in a 3-0 (30-24, 30-27, 30-21) victory over ACC foe Virginia on Saturday at Jervey Gym, culminating a busy day for the senior from St. Charles, IL.
Eckman took the LSAT this morning in Greenville, SC and returned to Clemson for the 6:00 pm match against the Cavaliers. She served the Tigers’ final three points of the evening to secure their 11 th win of the season. They are now 11-2 overall and remained unbeaten in conference play at 4-0 with Saturday’s win.
“Winning our first four league matches is really great, especially against some tough competition,” Eckman said. “It was really important for us to get these two at home this weekend since we now go on the road for five straight matches. We are now one of just two teams still undefeated in the ACC.”
Meghan Steiner led the Clemson offense for the second consecutive night with 11 kills in the match. Sophomore Lia Proctor added 10 in the victory, while setter Kelsey Murphy tallied 40 assists and 14 digs with seven kills of her own.
Danielle Hepburn posted eight total blocks in the three-game contest, and Didem Ege recorded 19 defensive saves.
Sarah Kirkwood led the Cavaliers (8-6, 3-2 ACC) with 17 kills, while Melissa Caldwell tallied 21 digs in the effort.
Down 11-9 in the first game, the Tigers rallied to take a four-point lead on the service of Ege. The Cavaliers came within one at 16-15 before Clemson scored four straight points, including two blocks and a kill by Hepburn. The margin widened to a 28-19 Tiger advantage, but Virginia went on a five-point run to narrow the gap to 28-24. Clemson then closed out the game on a Leslie Mansfield kill and a Cavalier error.
The teams battled in the second frame as the lead changed hands five times and the score was knotted on nine occasions. They remained within two points of each other until the Tigers posted points 14-16 and then led 22-17. The Cavaliers rallied from the five-point deficit to take a two-point advantage, but then fell behind by two after a four-point Clemson run. A kill by Virginia’s Kendahl Voelker narrowed the Tiger lead to 28-27. However, Steiner and Jeannette Abbot recorded back-to-back kills to give Clemson the 2-0 lead in the match.
Virginia posted the first three points in game three, but the Tigers responded with four of their own to take the early lead. After the teams were tied at six apiece, Clemson went ahead 9-6 and maintained the advantage for the remainder of the frame. The Cavaliers fought back to within one at 17-16 after two Kirkwood kills and a block by Shannon Davis and Beth Shelton, but the Tigers stayed in control of the match as Proctor and Hepburn posted crucial kills. Hepburn also teamed with Abbott to score Clemson’s 29 th point on a block before Eckman sealed the win with her second ace of the night.
The Tigers will kick off a five-match road trip next weekend as they travel to Miami and Florida State. Clemson will face the Hurricanes on Friday, Oct. 5 and then take on the Seminoles on Sunday, Oct. 7.
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