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No. 3 Louisville Sweeps South Dakota

Dani Busboom Kelly records 150th win at UofL

By: Trey Curry

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – September 1, 2023

Junior outside hitter Charitie Luper tallied 11 kills, seven digs, and hit .550 to lead the No. 3-ranked University of Louisville volleyball team to a 25-10, 25-16, 25-18 win over South Dakota Friday afternoon in their first game of the Tiger Invitational in Columbia, Missouri.

The win marks head coach Dani Busboom Kelly‘s 150th as the Cardinals move to 4-0 on the year and earn their third sweep of the season, hitting .301 as a team with 10 aces and 4 blocks. Graduate opposite hitter Aiko Jones had seven kills, seven digs, seven blocks, and hit .700, while sophomore middle blocker Cara Cresse had eight kills, six blocks, and three aces. South Dakota hit .022 as a team with two aces and five blocks, and they were led by Evelyn Diedrich’s six kills.

UofL is back on the court tomorrow afternoon at 12 p.m. to take on Northern Kentucky on the second day of the Tiger Invitational. They finish the Invitational off with a 3:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon match against the Missouri Tigers.

Set by Set Recap
Set 1
The match began with middle blocker Phekran Kong and Jones teaming up for a block to get the Cardinals on the board, followed by a Jones kill to put Louisville up 2-0. Two kills by Amanda Loschen helped South Dakota go on an early 4-1 run, putting the Coyotes in front 4-3. Outside hitter Anna DeBeer earned her first kill of the match to spark a streak of seven unanswered points by the Cardinals, including Jones and Cresse assisting in three blocks, making the score 10-4. A service ace by Cresse forced a Coyote timeout with Louisville leading 16-8, and later in the set, with the score at 20-10, the Cards tallied five unanswered points, featuring a kill by Jones and two block assists from Kong, to give Louisville a 25-10 set win. The Cardinals hit .364 in the set, with two aces, 12 digs, and seven blocks.

Set 2
The Cards got off to a quick start in set two, holding a 7-1 lead with the help of kills by DeBeer, Jones, and Luper. South Dakota fought back, with a 4-0 burst capped off by an Avery Van Hook kill, to cut the Louisville lead to 10-8. Back-and-forth action ensued, with Luper tallying two more kills and setter Brigitta Petrenko tallying an ace, and the Cards led 20-15 going into a Coyote timeout. Van Hook had another kill coming out, but Louisville again went on 5-0 run, featuring kills from middle blocker Reese Robbins and Kong, to clinch the set at 25-16 and take a 2-0 set lead. The Cardinals never trailed in the set and hit .265 with 16 digs.

Set 3
South Dakota, much like Louisville in the second set, came out firing in set three, with aces by Kamryn Farris and Alaina Wolff helping the Coyotes take a 7-2 lead. The Cards methodically chipped away at the lead, and setter Elle Glock teamed up with outside hitter Alanna Bankston and Jones for back-to-back kills to give the Cardinals their first lead of the set at 12-11. After Diederich halted the momentum with a kill of her own for South Dakota, the Cardinals reeled off four straight points, headlined by an ace from defensive specialist Kamden Schrand and another kill from Jones, and the Cardinals were set up to finish the match with a 16-12 lead. A block by Madison Harms and Diederich put the Coyotes within four at 21-17, but that was as close as they’d get, and another Bankston kill finished the set at 25-18, giving the Cardinals a 3-0 match win. Louisville hit .296 and had six aces, just enough to maintain the warmed-up .241-hitting Coyotes.

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