Photo courtesy of UD Athletics.
Coming into the A-10 semifinals after cruising through the regular season, the Flyers volleyball team beat Fordham in straight sets Friday at the Frericks Center.
The Flyers opened up the first set with a 6-1 burst. The lead continued to extend slowly, and the Rams called timeout when the Flyers led 11-5, at which point the Flyers already had 3 service aces.
Extending the lead further, the Rams were forced to call another timeout with the Flyers up 20-11. At the timeout, the Flyers led kills 10-6.
Cruising through the rest of the first set, the Flyers added another ace and won the set 25-15. A kill by freshman middle blocker Alayna Yates won the set, but redshirt junior outside hitter (and A-10 Player of the Year) Jamie Peterson led the way with 4 kills and 1 ace.
A pair of aces by Peterson opened up a 6-2 advantage for the Flyers in the second set. While the Rams trimmed the deficit down to three a few times, the Flyers went on a 4-1 run of points to take a 13-7 lead and force a Rams timeout.
The Rams were more competitive in the second half, but were forced to call timeout after the Flyers opened up a 21-15 lead. Freshman outside hitter Lexie Almodovar and Yates both had 6 kills each, and Almodovar had 3 aces as the second set neared its end.
The Flyers closed the second half with a strong kill by Almodovar (up to 7), and won the second set 25-18. Yates and Peterson each had 6 kills, and the Flyers led kills (27-17) and service aces (7-0) comfortably through the first two sets.
The Rams took their first lead in any set early in the third (3-2), and took their biggest lead at 10-8. However, the Flyers responded with a 7-3 run that was momentarily stopped by a media timeout. At the timeout, Almodovar and Peterson were up to 19 kills and 6 aces combined.
After the media timeout, the Flyers held onto the two-point lead, and stretched it to 23-20, forcing the Rams to call timeout.
The match point came on a kill by Almodovar, who finished with 10 for the game. Peterson led the team with 12 kills, and the Flyers won the third set 25-20.
Cruising to a straight-set win, the Flyers will face VCU tomorrow at noon at Frericks Center. In their only match-up this season on March 6 in Dayton, the Flyers won in straight sets. With an A-10 championship and an NCAA Tournament appearance on the line, the 12-1 Flyers will look to continue their dominance over the A-10.