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The Daily Tar Heel

UNC volleyball falls 3-0 to Notre Dame on Faculty and Alumni Appreciation Night

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First-year outside hitter Mabrey Shaffmaster (9) hits the ball over the net during the game against Notre Dame on Nov 5. UNC lost 3-0.

The North Carolina volleyball team (18-6, 7-6 ACC) lost to Notre Dame (10-12, 7-5 ACC) by a score of 3-0 on Faculty and Alumni Appreciation Night in Carmichael Arena on Friday. 

What happened?

Both teams came out of the gate with a scrappy defense allowing for several long rallies and a competitive score for the majority of the first set. The Fighting Irish eventually jumped out to a 20-16 lead following a few errors by the Tar Heels before taking the first set, 25-22. 

After regrouping to start the second set, UNC took its first lead of the game at 4-3 thanks to a couple aggressive plays by the Tar Heel offense. The teams then traded points until Notre Dame went on a 7-1 run to win the second set, 25-20. 

UNC  grabbed an early lead once again to start the third set, this time hanging on a bit longer before Notre Dame tied the set at 10 point apiece. After falling into a 20-16 deficit, the Tar Heels went on a quick 3-0 run to force a Notre Dame timeout. But, the Fighting Irish came out of the break strong, winning five of the next seven points to secure the match. 

Who stood out? 

A tough UNC defense was largely responsible for keeping the Tar Heels in the game, weathering a very intense Notre Dame offense and allowing the offense to get back in scoring position. The team had 35 digs and five blocks altogether. 

On the offensive side, first-year Mabrey Shaffmaster led the team in total attacks with 27 and graduate student Nia Robinson led the team in kills with 11. 

When was it decided?

The Tar Heels hung around until the very end, almost evening the third set score at 20-19 and keeping Notre Dame on their toes with their aggressive offense. 

But, two consecutive kills by Aubrey Hamilton put Notre Dame ahead, 22-19, and turned the momentum in favor of the Fighting Irish for the remainder of the game.

Why does it matter?

Despite the sweep, the teams appeared to be very evenly matched with just a few points deciding the outcome each time. Regaining confidence and cutting out some of the unforced errors will be crucial as the team heads into Sunday‚Äôs matchup with Louisville, who is ranked second in the nation and sits atop the ACC. 

With the loss, the Tar Heels are now 7-9 all-time against the Fighting Irish.

When do they play next?

The Tar Heels will be back in action at home on Sunday, Nov. 7 at 1 p.m., where they will take on the No. 2 Louisville Cardinals for Kids Club Day. Admission is free for all spectators. 

@DTHSports | sports@dailytarheel.com

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