Temple volleyball gets swept in conference road matches

The Owls lost to Cincinnati on Friday and East Carolina on Sunday.

Sophomore outside hitter Gem Grimshaw dives for the ball during the Owls' game against Tulsa at McGonigle Hall on Oct. 25. | ERIK COOMBS / FILE PHOTO

After picking up its second conference win of the season on Oct. 27 against Wichita State (7-17, 4-8 The American Athletic Conference), Temple University volleyball (11-12, 2-10 The AAC) played six sets and lost all of them this weekend in matches against Cincinnati (20-5, 11-1 The AAC) on Friday and East Carolina (18-8, 5-7 The AAC) on Sunday.

In its match against the AAC Eastern Division-leading Bearcats, the Owls lost the first two sets by double-digit margins and the third by six.

Two-time American conference player of the year, and the 2018 NCAA kills leader, Cincinnati redshirt-senior right side hitter Jordan Thompson put up a double-double with a match-high 15 kills and 11 digs.

“We wanted to… slow her down and put pressure on her with multiple attackers, but we were not completely able to do that due to injuries,” coach Bakeer Ganesharatnam said. “I think considering all of that, the team did a good job managing the match and creating opportunities for us until the separation happened.”

Sophomore setter Tyler Lindgren got limited playing time against Cincinnati and did not enter the match at ECU due to a lower-leg injury that she has been battling for some time. Her injury may keep her out for the rest of the season, Ganesharatnam said. 

Cincinnati sophomore middle blocker Adria Oliver and sophomore outside hitter Maria Mallon joined Thompson in double-digit kills with 12 and 10, respectively.

Sophomore right side hitter Peyton Boyd paced the Owls with nine kills on 15 shots. 

Sunday’s contest with ECU — one of the two conference opponents Temple has beaten this season — was far more competitive despite the Pirates’ sweep.

The Pirates beat the Owls on Sunday by just two points in each set. The Owls made unforced errors, keeping them from closing the two-point margin, Ganesharatnam said. 

“It’s just bad touch after bad touch. That’s how it feels,” Ganesharatnam said. “I think it’s also a question of pride at this point. We’ve really got to keep working hard and keep staying motivated so that we can represent us as a program and our university.”

Temple finished with 17 errors, and the Pirates accumulated 16.

Pirates junior right side hitter Bri Wood led all players with 18 kills and 14 digs, netting her a double-double. Temple sophomore outside hitter Gem Grimshaw had a double-double of her, and lead the Owls in kills and digs with 13. 

The Owls play its final road games of the season next weekend against Connecticut (9-15, 3-9 The AAC) on Friday and Tulane (17-8, 7-5 The AAC) on Sunday.

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