CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Rachael Moss hammered 22 kills and picked up 26 digs to lead the No. 13 Duke volleyball team to a 3-2 (29-31, 30-23, 30-18, 24-30, 15-10) ACC victory over North Carolina Sunday afternoon in Carmichael Auditorium.
Moss recorded her 10th double-double of the season against the Tar Heels and also added her team-leading 29th service ace. The 26 digs marked a career high for the sophomore who earned ACC and East Region Freshman of the Year honors in 2006.
Head coach Jolene Nagel notched her 100th career ACC victory in the contest, becoming only the fifth coach in the history of the conference to reach the century mark. She is currently tied with former Georgia Tech head coach Shelton Collier for fifth on the ACC’s all-time conference wins list.
The Blue Devils (12-3, 7-0 ACC) knocked down a season-high 92 kills against North Carolina (7-9, 3-4 ACC) while hitting .317 and racking up 12 blocks. For the third consecutive match, Duke had four players reach double figures in kills, as Carrie DeMange led all players with 24, followed closely by Rachael Moss’s 22. Becci Burling and Sue Carls each added 14, surpassing a career high for Burling and nearing an all-time best for Carls. Moss turned in a .415 hitting percentage on 41 attacks and scooped up a career-best and match-high 26 digs.
The Blue Devils also racked up a season-high 12 blocks against North Carolina with junior Jourdan Norman recording a team-high seven, including one solo stop. Burling, DeMange and junior Aana Wherry also claimed three each while Carls and senior setter Ali Hausfeld each added two.
Hausfeld served up 70 assists, marking the third time this season that the senior setter has tossed up 70 or more. The 2006 ACC Player of the Year currently leads all ACC setters with a 14.11 per game average and is well on pace to break Duke’s single season assists per game record of 13.82. Hausfeld also turned in a .400 hitting percentage on seven kills and 15 attacks.
Lauren Prussing led the Tar Heels with 12 kills while Ingrid Hanson-Tuntland and Christine Vaughen each added 11. Heather Brooks also reached double figures with 10 kills and recorded a team-high six blocks.
North Carolina blocked five shots in game one and committed just four attacking errors to edge Duke for the 31-29 victory. Moss was able to knock down seven kills on 10 errorless attacks for Duke, but Heather Brooks’ five-block performance was enough to seal the opening win for the Tar Heels. Neither team could manage more than a two-point advantage until a 4-0 North Carolina run erased a one-point deficit and put the Tar Heels up 28-25. The Blue Devils answered with a 4-0 run of their own to reach game point at 29-28, but following a Tar Heel timeout, North Carolina responded with two consecutive points to reclaim the advantage. A blocked attack would give North Carolina the game point and a 1-0 lead.
Duke bounced back in game two to post a .442 attack percentage on the efforts of Burling and Carls, who each added five kills, and Moss and DeMange, who each contributed four. Burling opened the frame with back-to-back kills for a 2-0 Duke lead that the Blue Devils would hold on to for the remainder of the game. Duke maintained at least a five-point advantage for the remainder of game two and eventually led by eight at 27-19 before DeMange and Burling knocked down kills for the game-clinching points.
DeMange knocked down six kills in game three as Duke compiled a season-high .629 hitting percentage in the 30-18 victory. DeMange was one of five Blue Devils with a hitting percentage of .600 or better in the third frame, joining Hausfeld, Moss, Burling and Carls. Duke committed only one attacking error in all of game three while forcing five from North Carolina. DeMange and Carls helped Duke break open a 5-5 tie with two blocks and two kills each during a 6-1 scoring run. Another 9-3 run would give the Blue Devils a 12-point advantage at 28-16 before back-to-back kills by DeMange and Moss sealed the game three victory.
DeMange hammered eight more kills in game four, but Duke could not overcome a monstrous start by North Carolina and fell 30-24 to even the match at 2-2. North Carolina staked a 6-1 lead to open the frame before flirting with a 10-point advantage at 15-6. After a 9-4 run, North Carolina led 24-10, but the Blue Devils mounted a 12-3 run of their own to cut the deficit back to five points. Hanson-Tuntland would cut off Duke’s momentum with two straight kills, however, before Megan Owens knocked down a kill to force the match to game five.
With their 17-match ACC winning streak on the line in game five, Duke came out swinging and claimed an 8-2 lead. North Carolina would not go quietly, however, and went on a 7-2 run to come within one point at 10-9. The Blue Devils broke North Carolina’s momentum after a service error and went ahead by three after a kill from DeMange. After swapping points with North Carolina, Duke led 13-10 and reached match point after DeMange hammered her second kill of game five. Moss would finally put the match away with her career-high 26th kill of the match.
With the win over North Carolina, Duke also earns half of a point in the Carlyle Cup competition, which is a year-long contest between the two schools that began during the 2000-01 academic year.
Duke will end its five-match road slate this Tuesday, Oct. 9 with a contest against Wake Forest in Winston-Salem, N.C. In their last meeting Duke swept the Demon Deacons 3-0 on the strength of a .360 hitting percentage and six blocks. The Blue Devils currently own a seven-match winning streak against Wake Forest, dating back to the 2003 campaign.