DURHAM – The Duke volleyball team is primed for the first of two back-to-back weekends on the road, beginning with Louisville Friday No. 4 and Notre-Dame Sunday. The first serve against the Cardinals is scheduled for 7 p.m., followed by a 1 p.m. game Sunday in South Bend. Both competitions will be streamed on ACCNX.
Duke lost to North Carolina 3-1 (23:25, 25:18, 20:25, 19:25) at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Duke was offensively run through Grace Johnson with 16 kills and just six misses to hit .217. She also added three aces, eight digs, and two blocks. Rachel Richardson Added 11 kills as a setter Devon Chang provided 47 assists. Georgia Stavrinides performed the blocking unit with six blocks Taylor Atkinson and Rylie Kadel with five or four. Libero Nikki Undergrowth Added 13 digs.
A CLOSER LOOK AT THE SERIES
Louisville leads the all-time streak 10-6 and has won seven straight games. Duke’s last win in Louisville was on October 2, 2016.
Notre Dame leads the all-time streak 11-9 and had amassed three straight wins before Duke broke that streak at Cameron Indoor Stadium a season ago.
RECOGNIZING THE OPPONENT
Louisville checks in as the No. 4 team in the nation this week and is 18-2 overall and 9-1 in the ACC. The Cardinals went on a 13-game winning streak with a 3-2 setback against No. 8 Pitt on Sunday. Louisville has one of the most efficient offenses in the country and ranks among the best nationally in numerous categories, as evidenced by its No. 4 batting average. and blocks per sentence (#3) is highlighted. As a team, Louisville is .302 this season and is led by Claire Chaussee with 259 kills and a .310 clip. Setter Raquel Lazaro has 674 dimes handed out while Elena Scott owns 280 digs to speed up the defense. At net, Amaya Tillman averaged 98.0 blocks as the Cardinals limited their opponents to a .168 batting average throughout the season.
Notre Dame is in Sunday’s contest with a 9-11 aggregate and 4-6 in the ACC but has lost back-to-back, including a 3-0 contest in Virginia over the weekend. The Fighting Irish are led by Avery Ross with 191 kills and Kaylyn Winkler with 150 kills and a .251 batting average. Phyona Schrader, Notre Dame’s main setter, has 627 assists to her tally while Hattie Monson has 330 digs. As a team, Notre Dame has played with a .178 batting average this fall while their opponents have a .213 season clip.
GRACIA THE TALL
Older outside hitter Grace Johnson was Duke’s biggest threat on the roster this fall, but that’s no surprise given their impressive numbers on both sides of the ball. She ranks in the top 50 in six national categories: aces per set (5th), aces total (6th), points per set (10th), kills per set (23rd), attacks per set (26th), and Total score (30th) . On the conference scale, it is in the top five of eight statistical categories: total aces (1st), aces per set (1st), total attacks (1st), total points (2nd), points per set (2nd). .), attacks per set (2nd), kills per set (2nd), and total kills (3rd). This season, she’s put on her best offensive performance since arriving at Durham with 303 kills and a .205 batting average. She also possesses 47 aces, 137 digs, and 32 blocks, proving she’s more than just an offensive threat. The Virginia Beach, Virginia native has had 10 or more kills 16 times this season, including a career-high 28 against Michigan (9/9). With one of the hardest serves in the nation, she has at least an ace in 16 games, including a career-best seven against East Carolina (9/3). Johnson has led the team in kills in 17 of the 19 games she’s played. She left the game against Michigan State due to an injury in the first set and finished second on the team in Miami. Over the course of her career, she has 974 kills, 115 aces, 742 digs, and 159 total blocks. She is just 26 kills away from hitting the 1,000 kill plateau as the 28th Blue Devil.
Duke will be on the road for games at Virginia Tech (Nov. 4) and Wake Forest (Nov. 6).
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