Matadors Engineer a Solid Three-Set Sweep Over James Madison
LONG BEACH, Calif. - Junior Britney Graff had a match-high 12 kills and fellow junior Mahina Haina added 11 as Cal State Northridge swept James Madison 25-20, 25-19, 25-23 Saturday afternoon at the Long Beach Mizuno Invitational at Walter Pyramid.
The Matadors (3-2) bounced back from a tough 3-1 loss to Wisconsin on Friday as Graff and Haina combined for 23 of CSUN's 41 kills. Graff also added 12 digs as she was one of four Matadors to post double figures in digs. Senior Monica McFarland led CSUN with a match-high 18 digs while Sydney Gedryn added 11 and Cindy Ortiz had 10.
As a team, Northridge hit .189 as Cieana Stinson made the first start of her collegiate career and hit a team-high .467 with eight kills in 15 swings with just one hitting error. Stinson also had a season-high nine blocks (one solo) while Gedryn added six blocks (one solo) and 36 assists.
The Matadors led early in the opening set before the Dukes came back to take a 9-7 lead on a kill from Danielle Erb. But CSUN used a pair of Graff kills and a pair of James Madison hitting errors to wrestle back the lead 11-9 and the Matadors would not trail again in the set. After the Dukes battled back to knot the score 12-12, CSUN claimed seven of the next eight points to take an insurountable 19-13 lead.
Northridge led virtually from start to finish in each of the final two sets. The Dukes led briefly early and late in the final set as the Matadors needed to stage a rally to capture the third and final set. With JMU holding a 23-22 lead, kills from Stinson and McFarland gave CSUN match point and Stinson and Gedryn teamed-up to stuff a Dukes attack and the Matadors had the three-set sweep.
Erb wound up leading James Madison with nine kills (.133) as the Dukes hit .118 as a team.
Cal State Northridge returns home Monday as the Matadors host Idaho in a 12:30 matinee at The Matadome.
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