Eagles sink Navy in dominant fashion, winning 3-0

Zeynep Uzen posts 1,000th dig and 18 kills in rout of Midshipmen

Eagles sink Navy in dominant fashion, winning 3-0

The American University volleyball team (14-9) swept the Navy Midshipmen (13-6) in dominant fashion at Bender Arena, winning 26-24, 25-12, 25-11. 

The Eagles came into this match off a 3-1 win against the Loyola Maryland Greyhounds on Oct. 20. Navy was riding high from a 3-0 sweep of the Greyhounds on Oct. 18 before visiting American. 

The Eagles got out to an early lead before a comeback from Navy proved that this would be a close set. A 11-10 lead for Navy after a 9-5 start in favor of American caused a timeout. 

During this timeout, announcers said that graduate student outside hitter Zeynep Uzen had notched her 1,000th career dig with American, setting her at No. 9 all time for the program. To celebrate, Uzen hit her fifth kill of the match to tie the score at 11. This set went to extra points, with kills from junior setter Esma Sipahi and Uzen to secure the set victory.

The next set got off to a hot start for the Eagles. With an 8-4 lead, American refused to take their foot off the gas pedal, continuing to pummel the Midshipmen. Seven kills from Uzen, two from freshman opposite hitter Carly Sciborski and two more from graduate student middle blocker Carlie Fikse carried the Eagles to a victory in their second set, putting them up 2-0. 

The Eagles expected a close match coming in, facing a strong Navy team that went 8-1 in their out-of-conference schedule, but the third set proved them wrong. While AU scored 5 of its 25 points from Navy’s errors, American’s hitters contributed to the finishing of a blowout.

Four more kills from Uzen, three more from sophomore outside hitter Adelina Berisha and two more from Sciborski — including the game-sealing spike — led American to a 25-11 set victory and 3-0 sweep of the Midshipmen. 

Uzen led the team in kills with 18, with Sciborski following with eight and Fikse close behind with seven. Junior middle blocker Lilou Stegeman led the team in total blocks with five. Junior libero Bridget Javitch led the team in digs with 17, followed by Uzen and freshman outside hitter Holly Hopkins at 11. Sipahi led the team in assists with 29. 

“We’re getting hot at the exact right time,” Sciborski said. She led the team in hitting percentage with .444. 

“We’re heading to Lafayette and Lehigh next, and with the way we beat both of them at home, we want to keep our momentum going into the end of the season.” She credited Sipahi with her performance in the game, saying “Esma made sure all of my hits were perfectly placed, I can’t thank her enough.” 

American next travels to play the Lehigh Mountain Hawks on Oct. 27 before returning home to face the Holy Cross Crusaders on Nov. 3. 

This article was edited by Penelope Jennings, Delaney Hoke and Abigail Pritchard. Copy editing done by Isabelle Kravis.


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