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No. 23 Duke Buries Charlotte 3-0
Saturday 09/17/2011  -  Duke Sports Information
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Courtesy: Duke Photography
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Senior setter Kellie Catanach

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Kellie Catanach neared a triple-double with seven kills, 25 assists and 10 digs to lead No. 23 Duke to a 3-0 (25-13, 25-9, 25-13) win over Charlotte on Saturday afternoon at the Black & Gold Challenge in Reynolds Gym.

Catanach directed a Duke offense that hit .302 for the match and made just 10 attack errors. She also helped out in a defensive effort that forced Charlotte to hit into more attack errors (24) than kills (22).

"We're pleased that our team came out today and executed, controlled the ball and played very disciplined," Duke head coach Jolene Nagel said. "After such a hard-fought match last night, we feel like we made a big turnaround and executed very efficiently while continuing to develop the areas of our team that we feel will help us be successful down the road."

Duke's defense started at the net as the Blue Devils put back nine blocks, including six from all-tournament selection Amanda Robertson. Christiana Gray also had five stops and Sophia Dunworth had a season-high tying four as Duke allowed only one Charlotte attacker to hit over .103.

The Blue Devil floor defense was just as good, as all-tournament libero Ali McCurdy teamed up with Catanach and fellow defensive specialist Nailah Waterfield to combine for 31 of Duke's 40 digs. McCurdy reached double digits for the 10th time this season and increased her ACC-leading total to 188. She also picked up nine service receptions without an error and has made only five receiving errors in Duke's 10 matches this season.

Duke dominated the other end of the serving game as well and dropped in six service aces. Robertson had three of those - all in game two - while junior Megan Hendrickson added two and Catanach gave Duke another. Hendrickson used those two aces and eight kills to lead Duke with 10.5 points for the match.

Charlotte struggled against Duke's defensive front for the entire match. It was not until set three that the 49ers (6-6) hit over .000, putting up a match-high .037 clip in game three. Duke, meanwhile, hit .286 or better in all three sets and had nine players contribute at least one kill.

Duke used 11 players in the win, including freshman Brittney Balser, who went 4-for-6 attacking, and sophomore Chelsea Cook, who went 2-for-4. Senior Kayla Kirk and freshman Jeme Obeime also contributed on from the left side and combined to go 4-for-6.

Duke will host Georgia Tech and Clemson next weekend in Cameron Indoor Stadium. The bout against Georgia Tech begins at 7 p.m. on Friday, while the Clemson game will follow the Duke football team's home game against Tulane. An official time has not been announced for the Duke-Clemson match.

-d-u-k-e-


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