ANA SANTOS / THE EAGLE
Despite a Washington, D.C. collegiate volleyball attendance record-breaking crowd of 2,483 fans for the sixth annual Bender Blue Out, AU fell to Georgetown 3-0 (25-19, 25-19, 25-19) Aug. 24 at Bender Arena.
“We were a little a shaky in every aspect of the game,” said Sara Rishell, who recorded four kills and three block assists on the night. “Our ball control wasn’t that great, and when you don’t have really steady control in the back row, then it puts the setter off and then the hitter off.”
Georgetown (1-0, 0-0 Big East) outhit AU (0-1, 0-0 PL) .183 to .085 and recorded 38 kills to the Eagles’ 30. Sophomore middle blocker/outside hitter Kelly McCaddin tallied a team-high nine kills for AU.
“The teams that are going to win usually have the highest hitting percentage and kills,” junior setter Kylann Scheidt said. “That was definitely a huge factor, we didn’t even hit .100.”
Scheidt posted a team-high 22 assists to go along with eight digs against the Hoyas.
AU kept it close throughout the first set, not allowing Georgetown to build a lead of more than four until the final points of the set. The Eagles led only once, but forced six lead changes and held a 16-15 advantage off two Allison Cappellino service aces. However, the Hoyas closed on a 10-3 run that gave them the 25-19 victory.
“Allison did a really strong job of controlling the middle of the floor, digging balls and controlling the balls,” AU head coach Barry Goldberg said. “I was quite pleased with her overall performance in her first match.”
Cappellino, the freshman outside hitter/libero, also had a game-high 15 digs.
Georgetown got off to a quick start in the second set, scoring eight of the first 10 points. AU wasn’t able to tie or take the lead after that and fell 25-19.
The Eagles led four separate times in the third set, including at 15-12 after three consecutive McCaddin kills.
But that was the largest and final lead of the game for AU, as the Hoyas went on a 5-1 spurt to take back control. Georgetown sophomore outside hitter Alex Johnson recorded four of the Hoyas last six points to put the Eagles away 25-19 for the third straight time.
Johnson registered the only double-double of the match with a game-high 19 kills and team-high 12 digs.
“The main problem we had was stopping [Johnson] on the outside,” Rishell said. “What we can take from it is we need to start making changes earlier in the game so they don’t get up as much as they did. She was definitely their go-to hitter, and we just couldn’t stop her.”
Despite the loss, the Eagles think they’ll be able to learn from the match.
“I think we’ll definitely play together more and we’ll be better in [future] matches,” Cappellino said. “I think we have a great season ahead of us, and we’ll just keep improving.”