From Emory University Athletics
In a battle of two top-10 ranked Division III programs, the Emory volleyball team battled to a Friday evening win at home over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at the Emory National Classic. The No. 4-ranked Eagles won their sixth straight outing and raised their record to 7-1 following a 3-1 decision (25-21, 19-25, 25-19, 27-25) over the No. 8-ranked Athenas who slipped to 7-3. Earlier in the day CMS defeated No. 6 Juniata by a 3-0 count.
Playing before a raucous crowd at the Woodruff PE Center, Emory finished the match with a .187 hitting percentage (62-26—193) compared to .146 (43-20—157) for CMS. The Athenas held the slimmest of advantages in digs, 86-85, and in total blocks, 11-7.
Sophomore Morgan McKnight led four Emory double-figure terminators with a career-best tying 15 kills while adding 11 digs (second double –double of the season) and two service aces. Freshman Leah Saunders pounded out a season-high 14 kills and chipped in 14 digs. Sophomore Sara Carr and junior Sydney Leimbach aided in the offensive effort with 13 and 11 terminations, respectively, with Leimbach chipping in four block assists. Junior Mady Arles doled out a career-high 33 assists and added five kills and four block assists. Sophomore Elyse Thompson totaled a team-high 20 digs.
In the fourth set, a kill by McKnight gave the Eagles a seemingly comfortable 17-12 edge. However, three straight CMU points narrowed the gap to 17-15 before a kill by McKnight gave Emory an 18-15 advantage. The Athenas then rattled off an 8-2 spurt, the final three points snapping a 20-20 deadlock and pushing the visitors to a 23-20 lead. Back-to-back terminations by Leimbach drew Emory to within two points but a successful attack attempt by Margaux Arntson put CMS one point from forcing a fifth set. However, the Eagles accounted for the next three points, with Leimbach and McKnight registering kills in the stretch, put Emory in a position to seal the match. The Athenas stayed alive, knotting the score at 25-25 before kills by Morgan, one of her seven in the set, and Saunders closed out the contest.