Power Forward

Strong Block Leads ORU to Sweep of Canisius

Courtesy: ORU Media Relations
          Release: 08/24/2012
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Photo by: ORU Media Relations
Laura Taylor (left) racked up eight blocks in the Canisius win, while Jessica Pancratz (right) had seven
BUFFALO, N.Y. - After struggling to win their morning match on Friday, Oral Roberts University coasted past Canisius, 3-0 (25-16, 25-18, 28-26), on the opening day of the UB Invitational. The win moves ORU to 2-0 on the young season.

ORU out-blocked Canisius, 14-9, a big part of the three-set win. Laura Taylor led the way with a career-best eight blocks, while Sheina Fernandes and Jessica Pancratz added seven blocks each.

Offensively, Fernandes and Luara Rosa led the way with a dozen kills each, while Tatum Fredeen collected 11 kills at a sterling .529 clip.

Bruna Silva tallied a team-best 16 digs, with Taylor chipping in 15 to go with 36 assists.

As a team, ORU outhit the Golden Griffins, .254 to .109. Canisius (0-2) was led by Roxanne Hernandez, who collected 11 kills in defeat.

The Golden Eagles set the tone early in the match, hitting .429 in the opening set en route to a 25-16 victory. Sheera Sirola’s team took control with a late 9-1 run, which included back-to-back thunderous kills by Rosa. A Fernandes kill squashed a late Canisius run to give ORU a 1-0 lead.

The second set was tied at 11 before Fernandes unleashed back-to-back kills, keying a 5-0 run. The margin held throughout the set, and a Pancratz kill gave ORU a 25-18 win.

The Griffins were in a prime position to claim the third set after five consecutive ORU errors gave Canisius a 14-10 lead. But ORU would rally thanks in large part to a rash of opponent miscues. Canisius suffered three straight errors later in the set, giving ORU a pair of match points a 24-22.

Canisius fought back with three straight points, taking a 25-24 lead, before Rosa killed off the set point with another blast. The Griffins fought off one more match point before an error doomed them to defeat, at 28-26.

Prior to Friday, ORU had never before faced San Jose State or Canisius. At the end of the day’s competition, they now own a victory over both.

The Golden Eagles look to sweep the season-opening UB Invitational tomorrow, when they face host Buffalo at 4 pm CT.
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