DURHAM, N.C. – The Duke volleyball team won its sixth-straight match Friday evening, downing Virginia 3-0 (25-19, 25-18, 25-17) in the two teams’ ACC opener at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Junior outside hitter Jeme Obeime led all players with 16 kills while sophomore outside hitter Emily Sklar added 12 for the Blue Devils.
Obeime knocked down her 16 kills on 28 attack attempts, committing just three attack errors while posting a .429 hitting percentage. Tonight marked Obeime’s second consecutive match in double-digit kills and seventh overall this season. With her 12 kills, Sklar raised her team-leading total to 130 for the 2013 campaign.
“It was really exciting,” said Obeime. “Every ACC match is really important, and Virginia is a really good team. We’ve played them a lot over the years and had a lot of tough matches, so we tried to mix things up and use a lot of our offense. We’re really executed to pull off the win.”
Freshman Jordan Tucker registered a match-high .538 hitting percentage, amassing eight kills on 13 attack attempts. The rookie from Prairie Village, Kan., also added four blocks in the win. Overall, Duke (10-2, 1-0 ACC) totaled 8.0 blocks to 4.0 for Virginia (7-6, 0-1 ACC).
“Tonight, we had a really good feel overall,” added Tucker. “It was really calm out there. We’re a really close team and we have a lot of fun together, and I think that helps us on the court.”
Duke’s defense was on point as the Blue Devils kept the Cavaliers to under a .200 hitting percentage in all three sets. Three Blue Devils reached double-digit digs, paced by senior Ali McCurdy’s 14. Sophomore Elizabeth Campbell added 11 digs to go along with five blocks, while junior setter Maggie Deichmeister picked up her fifth double-double of the season with 11 digs and 32 assists.
“I was pleased that we came out and we executed, and we were able to put pressure on early,” said head coach Jolene Nagel. “We were a little tight tonight. We could easily improve that, but I was really pleased to come out here and play against a good, young Virginia team that has some great athletes and be able to win it in three. That was huge for our team.”
The first set opened with a 5-5 stalemate before a 7-1 Duke run gave the Blue Devils a comfortable lead. Virginia was unable to regain momentum as Duke captured the opening frame, 25-19. Obeime led the way with eight kills on 13 errorless attack attempts.
The Blue Devils got off to a slow start in the second set, falling behind 8-4. The Blue Devils would rally with a 10-2 spurt keyed by three kills from Sklar and a McCurdy service ace. Duke’s advantage grew to seven points as the Blue Devils took the second stanza, 25-18.
Duke capped off the match with a 25-17 victory in the third and final set. Obeime recorded five kills while Tucker added four. Senior Chelsea Cook amassed three service aces in the frame and would finish the night with five kills and a pair of blocks.
Junior rightside hitter Tori Janowski and freshman outside hitter Haley Kole paced Virginia with 10 kills each. Senior libero Emily Rottman totaled 14 digs while freshman defensive specialist Karlie Suber added 10.
Next up, Duke takes the court against Virginia Tech Saturday evening, facing off against the Hokies Sept. 28 at 7:30 p.m., from Cameron Indoor Stadium.