Nuggets’ strong finish moves them to 3-0 in conference in volleyball

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NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana closed with a flurry Saturday, hitting .550 and serving six aces during a 13-minute third set to clinch a 25-17, 25-22, 25-5 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference volleyball victory against Talladega at the Convocation Center.

The Gold Nuggets (8-1, 3-0), in the best start of their 10 seasons of existence, won their seventh in a row.

Juliana Tomasoni produced 10 kills and eight digs for XULA. Kayla Black had nine kills and a career-best five aces, and Vivica Price-Spraggins had seven kills and hit .417. Price-Spraggins hit better than .400 for the fifth consecutive match.

The Gold Nuggets served a season-best 13 aces. Amanda Perry tied her career best with three, and Anna Dalla Vecchia and Eva Le Guillou served two apiece. Le Guillou equaled her career best.

Dalla Vecchia had a match-high 12 digs and reached double figures for the fifth consecutive match. Tiffany Phillips (16 assists) and Le Guillou (14) again shared the setting.

Jennifer Brown had six kills for Talladega (2-6, 0-2), the GCAC runner-up a year ago, and Bethany Holland had 15 assists and 11 digs.

XULA built a 22-10 first-set lead. In the middle set the Gold Nuggets rallied from 4-0 and 13-10 deficits. XULA pulled away in the final set with a 16-1 run that included three aces from Black and two from Le Guillou.

The Gold Nuggets will visit William Carey at 6 p.m. Tuesday and SUNO at 6 p.m. Thursday. The next home match will be Sept. 28 against Dillard, the only other team unbeaten in GCAC matches.

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