Aces Volleyball drop hard-fought contest at DePaul


Cardona and Feliciano put up strong numbers 

CHICAGO – The duo of Giulia Cardona and Melanie Feliciano combined for 45 kills, but it was not enough as the University of Evansville volleyball team dropped a hard-fought road match at DePaul on Saturday evening.

Cardona had a match-high 23 kills while Feliciano added 22.  Ainoah Cruz led the Purple Aces with 15 digs while Kora Ruff added 48 assists.  Aside from Cardona and Feliciano, no UE player had more than two kills.  Audrey Klemp tallied 15 kills to lead the Blue Demons.

Game 1 – DePaul 25, UE 23

Back-and-forth action saw both teams look to be in control throughout portions of the opening set.  A big start from the Blue Demons saw them take a 5-2 advantage while Evansville responded with five in a row as Giulia Cardona had two kills and an ace to give UE its first lead.  Six in a row by DePaul put the lead right back in their hands as they went up 11-7.

Kora Ruff got the Aces back on track as her kill was the first of four points in a row that knotted the score at 11-11.  Consecutive errors by DePaul put UE back in front at 16-14 and the squads continued to battle it out down the stretch.  Two kills from Melanie Feliciano had the Aces in good shape with a 23-21 edge but the Blue Demons stormed back as they recorded the final four tallies to take the set.

Game 2 – DePaul 34, UE 32

In the longest set of the season thus far, the Aces and Blue Demons duked it out once again.  After opening the game on a 3-1 run, DePaul extended the lead to five points – 13-8.  Evansville clawed its way back and was finally able to tie the score at 18-18 on a service ace by Ruff.

Feliciano registered a kill to give UE set point, up 24-23, before DePaul tied it up.  Both teams had chances to end the set, but it was DU who would clinch with a service ace, taking a 2-0 lead with a 34-32 win.

Game 3 – DePaul 25, UE 20

Looking to keep the match going, the Purple Aces had the early momentum, scoring the opening three tallies before solidifying a 7-4 lead.  Ainoah Cruz capped off the early run with an ace.  The Blue Demons countered with three in a row as a larger 8-1 rally put them back in front – 12-8.

Unfortunately, the Aces were unable to close the gap as DePaul padded its lead and clinched the match with a 25-20 win.