• Score: Johns Hopkins 3, Kean 0 (25-19, 25-14, 25-20)
• Records: Johns Hopkins (25-3), Kean (NJ) (28-11)
• Location: Owings Mills, MD (Stevenson University • Owings Mills Gym)
• The Short Story: Johns Hopkins defeated Kean College, 3-0 in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday night on the campus of Stevenson University.
How it Happened
• The first set was back-and-forth in the early going, and with the set tied at 14, JHU scored four unanswered to go up 18-14. The Cougars got back into the set getting to within one at 20-19. Hopkins went on a 4-0 run to get match point and an error by Kean would give the Blue Jays the 25-19 set one win. Elizabeth Wuerstle led the Blue Jays with four kills in the set while Louisa Kishton led Hopkins with three digs. The Blue Jays hit .259 in the opening set while Kean hit -.050.
• Sasha Gorelik put JHU up 6-2 in the second and an ace from Esther Hong gave the Blue Jays a 7-2 lead early in the set. Johns Hopkins built an 11-5 lead on back-to-back kills from Wuerstle and Gorelik, followed by an attacking error by Kean. The Cougars eventually got to within four points at 18-14, but two kills apiece from Simone Bliss and Wuerstle put the Blue Jays up eight at 22-14. Another kill from Bliss would give Hopkins the set two win, 25-14.
• Kean built a 4-0 lead to begin the third set before a Bliss kill stopped the Cougars run. That wouldn't deter Kean which scored three straight points to go up 7-1. Kills from Bliss and Kishton got Hopkins to within four at 7-3. Down 11-5 Hopkins put together a small run to get the score to 11-7, however, the Cougars responded, and rebuilt their lead to 13-8. A kill from Bliss made the score 13-9 and on Wuerstle's serve, Hopkins would score three straight to get to within one point at 13-12. A kill from Kishton tied the set for the first time at 14, and the Blue Jays would take their first lead of the set on another kill from Kishton. The kill capped a 10-3 run by Hopkins. A kill from Bliss would give the Blue Jays their 25th point of the set as they took the decisive set 25-20 and the match 3-0.
What it Means
• This is the second NCAA Tournament win in program history for the Blue Jays.
• Johns Hopkins is now 2-4 in the tournament.
Inside the Box Score
• The Blue Jays finished with a team hitting percentage of .379, which sets a team record for the highest hitting percentage in an NCAA Tournament match.
• Bliss finished the match with a team-high 18 kills and a .467 hitting percentage.
• Natalie Aston led the team with 35 assists while Hong finished with a team-leading nine digs.
• JHU will play the winner of Stevenson/Hunter tomorrow afternoon. Hopkins fell to Stevenson 3-1 earlier in the season and has never faced Hunter. Hopkins has never faced the Mustangs in the tournament.