October 11, 2013

VCU’S CARDIAC KIDS EARN SEVENTH TIEBREAKER VICTORY

Score: VCU 3, George Mason 2 (27-25, 17-25, 27-25, 22-25, 15-12)
Location:
Fairfax, Va. (RAC Gym)
Records:
VCU 17-4 (5-0 A-10), George Mason 5-13 (1-3 A-10)

TALKING POINTS
  • Romana Kriskova supplied 16 kills and VCU booked 18 blocks on the way to the Rams' seventh straight victory. The win improves VCU to 7-2 in five-set matches this season, including 3-0 in Atlantic 10 Conference play.
  • Three Rams recorded at least seven total blocks in the win, including sophomore Uzoamaka Ibeh (10), junior Janelle Sykes (8) and freshman Nora Reed (7). Behind their stout front line, VCU was able to hold the Patriots to a .114 hitting percentage.
  • Sykes and sophomore Kalah Jones added nine kills each for VCU, while Reed provided seven and hit .429. Three players, junior Amanda Love, freshman Becca Cazares and Kriskova recorded 12 digs each for the Rams. Kriskova also fired four service aces.
  • The Rams looked as if they'd run away with the fifth and deciding set, using a 7-0 burst that included two Kriskova kills and two Reed/Ibeh double blocks to take an 8-2 lead. The Patriots would put a scare into VCU, pulling within 13-12, but Kriskova spiked a kill on the ensuing play, and the Patriots followed with a mishandled set to cede the set and match to the Rams.

RAMS FULL OF RALLIES

  • The first set featured a remarkable VCU comeback. The Rams fell behind 20-12 and were staring at a possible 1-0 hole on the road. But VCU stunned the Patriots with a 12-3 rush, led by two kills and a block from Reed, to commandeer a 24-23 lead.
  • A short time later, Mason was sitting with a 25-24 lead. Following a George Mason service error that tied the score, Sykes and Ibeh combined on consecutive double blocks to give the Rams a 27-25 win in the set and a 1-0 match advantage.
  • In the third set, VCU again faced set point, only to score the final three points to snatch a win. A Kriskova ace gave VCU a 26-25 edge, and again it was Ibeh, this time with Reed, teaming for a set-clinching block.

QUOTABLES FROM COACH ROGERS

  • "Another five-set match and they battled once again. It was crucial that we go momentum in the fourth set and we started off fast in the fifth."
  • "We need to communicate more. It was off and on during the whole match."
  • "Blocking in the fifth set from Janelle, UC and Kaitlyn was crucial."
  • "It's a 'W', but we have to get better."
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
  • Kriskova blasted her 400th kill of the season Friday night. She's the ninth Ram in program history to cross the 400-kill plateau in a single season. She also has 32 service aces this season, the most by a Ram since 2010.
  • The Rams have met the Patriots 61 times, more than any other opponent except for William & Mary. The Rams are 19-42 all-time against George Mason, but are 8-5 against their intra-state foe since 2005.  
WHAT'S NEXT
VCU will stay on the road, where it will face George Washington on Saturday, Oct. 12 at 7 p.m. in Washington, D.C.
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