The American University volleyball team swept Howard, 3-0, to kick off its season and the D.C. Volleyball Challenge on Friday night in Fairfax, Va.
Kristyna Lindovska led American (1-0) with 15 kills, hitting .406 on the night, as the Eagles hit .314 as a team. Monika Smidova registered a team-high 22 assists and added six kills with Megan Rosburg posting 11 digs and Morgan Hendrix notching four blocks and nine kills for American.
The Eagles had a dominant first set, using an 11-2 run to take the lead and closing out the set with eight straight points for the 25-9 victory to open the match.
Howard (0-1) knotted up the second set at seven apiece but back-to-back kills from Smidova gave American a 10-7 advantage. The Bison battled back within four, 19-15, on a block by Stephanie Shultis and Assata Conway, but the Eagles rallied with six consecutive tallies for the 25-15 win.
Howard took an 8-7 lead early in the final set, but four straight points gave American the advantage for good. The Bison continued to battle, cutting the lead to one, 16-15, on an American error. Hendrix sparked a 7-1 run as the Eagles held off a Howard rally down the stretch to secure the sweep with a 25-20 victory.
American held the Bison to a .010 team hitting percentage on the night. Katherine Broussard led Howard with eight kills while Shultis added 18 assists and Allyson Lods notched 10 digs. Conway finished the night with four blocks to lead the Bison.
The Eagles return to Bender Arena tomorrow, Saturday, August 31, for a pair of matches to close out the D.C. Volleyball Challenge. American faces Georgetown at 11 a.m. before taking on George Mason at 7 p.m. for the Seventh Annual Bender Blue Out, where the Eagles will be looking to break its own Washington, D.C. collegiate volleyball attendance record. All students with a valid AU ID will be admitted for free and treated to a free pregame fan fest with Coca-Cola products, Robeks smoothies, face painting and sign making. Saturday's game will also be the first chance for Blue Crew members to pick up their official 2013-14 Blue Crew t-shirts and membership ID cards. Watch both of Saturday's matches live on Eagles Vision TV.