Eagles Rise Above Blue Jays

Dejia Danhi
Dejia Danhi had a career-high six service aces to go with her six kills, two solo blocks and four block assists.

ELIZABETHTOWN, Pa.-The Juniata women's volleyball team cruised to a 3-1 (25-16, 25-22, 23-25, 25-11) victory at Elizabethtown Wednesday evening in Thompson Gymnasium.

The opening set was tight early, with a kill from Morgan Edwards (Lancaster, Pa. / Penn Manor) pulling the Eagles even at 7-7. Three straight aces from Dejia Danhi (Ashburn, Va. / Stone Bridge) pushed the lead to 10-7. Two kills from Samantha Freese (Lewisberry, Pa. / Red Land H.S.) along with kills from Marybeth Weihbrecht (Mechanicsburg, Pa. / Cumberland Valley) and Victoria Taylor (Middletown, Del. / Delaware Military Academy) pushed the Eagle advantage to 17-10. The Blue Jays scored the next four points to make it 17-14. Following a Juniata timeout,  the teams traded points as JC maintained a three-point lead at 19-16. Juniata closed the set on a 6-0 run as two Elizabethtown errors, a kill from Edwards, two more Danhi aces and one more kill from Edwards closed set one, 25-16.

The second set was close early as the teams traded the lead back and forth before JC slowly started to pull away. The Eagles led by as many as six at 16-10 following a solo block from Edwards, but the Blue Jays hung around, pulling within two eventually at 23-21. A service error gave the Eagles set point, Elizabethtown got one back before Grace Erskine (Mooresville, N.C. / Community School of Davidson) ended the set with a kill, 25-22.  

The third set followed a similar script to the rest of the match as Juniata slowly built their lead with two straight kills from Marie Gonsar (New Castle, Pa. / Shenango H.S.) put Juniata in the driver's seat, 19-12. The Blue Jays had other ideas as they went on a 13-6 run to close the set and took set three, 23-25. A  Freese pulled the Eagles within one, 23-24, but they couldn't complete the comeback to end the match.  It was the first set the Eagles dropped since September 15th

Juniata came flying out to start set four as three kills from Weihbrecht, two from Edwards, one from Taylor and a Blue Jay error made it 7-0 JC. Juniata maintained a 7-0 advantage before two Elizabethtown errors, two kills from Taylor and another from Gonsar made it 20-8. Later, with match point, a block by Taylor and Weihbrecht end set four 25-11.

Juniata will host the opening round of the Wid Guisler Invitational Friday at 3:000 against Mary Washington.