CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The Valkyries volleyball team dropped a pair of matches during the opening day of the Queens Invitational on Friday, September 6. Game one saw the Purple and Gold fall to Augusta 3-0 (25-22, 25-16, 25-18) before dropping the nightcap to Queens (N.C.) in straight sets (25-17, 25-9, 25-15).
Scores: Augusta 3, Converse 0; Queens (N.C.) 3, Converse 0
Records: Augusta (1-0), Queens (N.C.) (1-0), Converse (0-2)
Location: Levine Center, Charlotte, N.C.
INSIDE THE BOXSCORE
- Junior outside hitter Brittany Tepedino led the Valkyries with 18 kills over the two-match span
- Sophomore Elizabeth Yohe registered 32 digs to anchor the defense
- Junior Lauren Tharrington dished out a team-high 32 assists
- Freshmen Lottie Hutson and Sara Grace Westmoreland each had two service aces
HOW IT HAPPENED – Game One vs. Augusta
Augusta raced out to a 7-2 lead early in the opening set, but Converse collected four of the next five points to narrow the deficit to 8-6. An unforced error by the Vals followed by a kill by the Jags' Holland Martin pushed the lead back out to 11-7.
However, Converse showed its resiliency, battling all the way back to knot the contest at 14-all midway through. The Jaguars used a 4-1 run to regain the momentum at 19-15. Once again the Valkyries poise was apparent as Elizabeth Coffey connected on a kill to spark a 5-0 run, giving Converse its first lead, 20-19.
The two teams traded the next four points, but Augusta, with the score knotted at 21, captured the set after taking four of the next five points.
Set number two mirrored the first as AU took a 5-2 lead during the onset. Converse took advantage of errors by the Jaguars attack, cutting the score to 6-5 following a kill by Brittany Tepedino. With the score at 11-10 in favor of Augusta, the Jaguars blew the set open with a massive 12-3 run, expanding the lead to double-digits (23-13) en route to a 25-16 set two win.
The third set of the match was a back-and-forth affair as the two teams traded the first 32 points. Deadlocked at 16, Augusta ripped off four in a row and nine of 11 to complete the sweep, winning the final set by a score of 25-18.
HOW IT HAPPENED – Game Two vs. Queens (N.C.)
Queens jumped out to a quick 7-3 lead, but Converse rattled off a mini 10-4 run to trail 11-10 early in the initial frame. However, Queens took complete control of the contest after grabbing the next six points, pushing the lead out to 17-10. Converse could not recover from the spurt, dropping set one by the final of 25-17.
The Valkyries kept things interesting to begin the second set, trailing by a single point (6-5) following a ball handling error on the Royals. Unfortunately, that would be as close as the frame would be with Queens seizing complete control of the match with a 25-9 win in set number two.
A kill from Elizabeth Yohe gave Converse the first point of the third set, but QU came back with a 10-3 run to push ahead by six (10-4). An attack error on the Royals followed by three consecutive kills from Yohe brought the Purple and Gold to within 10-8.
However, Queens used another run, this time 6-0, to double-up the Vals (16-8). With the score at 22-11 in favor of the Royals, Converse put together a 3-0 burst following back-to-back kills from Tepedino and Lauren Tharrington as well as an ace by Kiara Cannon, but it was too little, too late as Queens closed out the set 25-15 and the match, 3-0.
The Valkyries will return to action tomorrow morning as they compete in the second and final day of the Queens Invitational. Converse will face #25 Wingate at 10 a.m. before taking on Lander at 4:45 p.m.