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Marquette Volleyball Roars Through Jacksonville For A Straight Sets Win


Freshman setter Gabby Benda is starting to assert herself as Marquette's primary setter.
Freshman setter Gabby Benda is starting to assert herself as Marquette's primary setter.
Maggie Bean/

While recapping the 2014 home opener against James Madison, I referred to Marquette's 69 minute dismissal of the Dukes as "positively Maddux-ian," referring to baseball Hall of Famer Greg Maddux's ability to mow through games with amazing speed and efficiency.

On Sunday, while facing Jacksonville at Oviedo (FL) High School, Marquette took that to a new level.  Perhaps motivated by having to go to five sets each of the last two days, or perhaps motivated by falling behind 0-2 to UCF on Saturday, the Golden Eagles ran through the Dolphins like a hot knife through butter, 25-8, 25-12, 25-15, in a match that lasted just 59 minutes.

Yep.  59 minutes, aka less than an hour.

That's what happens when you hit .526 as a team while holding your opponents to just .026.  MU had 47 kills in the match, led by 14 from Autumn Bailey, against just six attacking errors across all three sets.  Conversely, Jacksonville committed 15 attacking errors to help hand the match to the Golden Eagles.

While the attacking was incredibly precise against JU, the serving still left something to be desired.  While the win came relatively easily, Marquette still gifted 10 points to the Dolphins through miscues from the service stripe.  Elsewhere on the court, it appears that Gabby Benda is asserting herself as Marquette's permanent setter.  After a 46 assist outing against UCF, Benda had 28 in this contest against just just nine from Mary Nilles, who only played in two of the three frames.

Sammie Strausbaugh led what amounted to an offense for Jacksonville with nine kills.  Marquette enticed her into eight errors as well, though, as Strausbaugh hit just .032 on 31 attacks.

Up Next: It's time for the Big East schedule to start.  Boy, that snuck up on me.  Marquette starts their conference slate with Providence, who are making their re-entry to the Big East this season.  The Friars are 4-10 this season, but they did have a 4 match winning streak halted in their last outing against Hartford.