Temple defeated Memphis 3-0 Friday at McGonigle Hall.
Temple (12-3, 3-0 American Athletic Conference) earned 52 total kills and 7.5 blocks on the night compared to Memphis’ 36 kills and four blocks.
“I think we did a really good job of controlling the game,” junior outside hitter Caroline Grattan said. “[senior libero] Alyssa [Drachslin] and [senior setter] Sandra [Sydlik] did a really great job being able to control of the pass in the set, which I don’t think they did a very good job at. It was easy for them to get scrambled in serve receive, but stayed really confident tonight.”
After trailing 8-6 in the first set, the Owls rallied back to take their first lead of the game, 9-8. Junior outside hitter Caroline Grattan scored six out of Temple’s 18 kills to lead the Owls to a 25-16 opening set win.
“It was great, I loved every minute of it,” Grattan said.
Grattan, who suffered a sprained ankle before the season opener against University of Oregon Aug 28., used her injury as motivation for Friday’s game.
“I have been trying really hard in practice, my teammates have been really supporting me and as soon as I got in here everyone was excited,” Grattan said. “It’s what drives you because as soon as you get in the game it’s like ok this is the chance for me to prove that I can do it and prove to my coach I can do it.”
In the second set, Temple did not trail on its way to a 25-16 win. Junior outside hitter Tyler Davis earned a team-high 5 kills in the set.
“We keep each other in check, don’t want to get too comfortable or too cocky,” Davis said. “We are confident, but when [coach] Bakeer [Ganesharatnam] came in and said ‘Let’s not act like we already won, we still have another game to win, it’s not over till it’s over.’”
In the third set, Temple totaled 17 kills and game-high 40 team assists in the 25-20 victory.
“Memphis, teams like this are scrappy teams that fight hard,” Davis said. “They did a good job of staying close, but we responded well to that. We played consistent and fought back well.”
Connor Northrup can be reached at email@example.com.