Saturday, October 1, 2016

Gold Nuggets sweep SUNO, improve to 5-0 in conference

NEW ORLEANS — Monet Fontaine had nine kills and hit a season-high-tying .500 Thursday to help Xavier University of Louisiana defeat SUNO 27-25, 25-19, 25-11 at the Convocation Center and maintain its lead in Gulf Coast Athletic Conference volleyball.

The Gold Nuggets (8-13, 5-0) are the only unbeaten team in the GCAC. SUNO (4-9, 3-1) is in second place.

Fontaine produced kills on eight consecutive attacks — her final three of the first set and all five of the second set. The sophomore scored XULA's next-to-last point of the first set — Cara Ford then clinched with an ace — and scored four of XULA's final five points of the second set on three kills and a shared block with Sarah Pitts-Groce.

Juliana Tomasoni had seven kills and a match-high three aces for the Gold Nuggets. Bria Moore had six kills and hit .455 — she raised her team-leading hitting percentage to .347 — and Terri Drake had five kills. Amanda Perry produced 10 digs to reach double figures for the 19th time in 21 matches, and Tiffany Phillips and Ralitsa Slanchev had nine digs apiece.

Moore, Pitts-Groce, Phillips and Fontaine had two blocks apiece. Phillips had 29 assists.
Sonja Backovic had 11 kills and nine digs for SUNO, Tyjah Greenup had 10 digs, and Ana Bobovic had three blocks.

The Gold Nuggets led 18-15 in the opening set, but three SUNO kills and three XULA attack errors gave SUNO a 22-21 lead. XULA led 16-8 in the second set before SUNO cut the deficit to 18-17. The third set never was in doubt after XULA scored the first four points and cruised to leads of 9-2 and 18-8. Tomasoni ended the match with a kill.

XULA outhit SUNO .212 to .096 and had advantages of 37-31 in kills and 7-2 in aces.

The Gold Nuggets will continue their GCAC home stand with 1 p.m. matches against Talladega on Saturday and Edward Waters on Sunday. Including conference tournaments, XULA has won 14 straight and 77 of its last 78 matches against the GCAC.


Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

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