NEW YORK, N.Y. -- The Case Western Reserve University volleyball team split a pair of matches on day one of the prestigious 2011 University Athletic Association Championship Tournament at the Jerome S. Coles Sports and Recreation Center. The Spartans took a back-and-forth 3-2 decision versus host New York University in the opener before falling to No. 2 nationally-ranked Emory University (Ga.), 3-0.
The No. 4-seeded Spartans (22-9 overall, 5-4 UAA) are back in action tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m. versus No. 3 University of Chicago (Ill.) in the tournament's third-place match.
In the opener on Friday, Case defeated host NYU (19-15) in a five-set battle by scores of 25-20, 20-25, 25-5, 23-25 and 15-3. Senior middle hitter Tricia McCutchan (Hamilton, Ohio/Stephen T. Badin) led the charge with a match-high 16 kills and a .333 hitting percentage along with 10 block solos on defense. Senior outside hitter Rachael Suchy (Venetia, Pa./Peters Township) added to the attack with 11 kills.
Junior setter Breana Freeman (Geneva, Ohio/Geneva) paced the offense with 31 assists and picked up 10 digs on the defensive side for a double-double. Junior libero Rachel Gulasey (Cleveland, Ohio/Magnificat) led the defense with 26 digs and junior specialist Olivia Stanton-Ameisen (Bryn Mawr, Pa./The Baldwin School) totaled 14.
Versus the nationally-ranked Eagles (34-3, 9-0 UAA), the Spartans fell by counts of 25-18, 25-15 and 25-16. McCutchan totaled eight kills. Freeman recorded 15 assists and Gulasey led the defense with seven digs.