Liberty, CSU, Presbyterian & Asheville Produce Wins



The Liberty volleyball team used a balanced scoring attack, hitting .383 during a 3-0 (25-20, 25-20, 25-20) sweep of visiting Winthrop on Saturday at the Vines Center.

With the win, the Lady Flames (17-7, 7-2 Big South) remain atop the Big South standings, while Winthrop (11-12, 5-4) sees its four-match winning streak come to an end.

Liberty has now won each of its last 19 conference home matches, breaking the previous program record of 18, set from Oct. 15, 1996 through Nov. 9, 1999.  The Lady Flames are 7-0 at home this season, stretching their overall home winning streak to 12.  Liberty has also prevailed in each of its last 20 sets at home.

Both teams hit over .300 for the match, with Liberty outhitting Winthrop, .383-.308.  The Lady Flames held an 8-7 advantage in blocks and 42-39 in digs.

Liberty's Caroline Douglas led all players with 14 kills.  Lillie Happel recorded 12 kills, while Loren Thomas hit .500 in scoring 10 kills, to go with a match-high six blocks.  Jade Craycraft registered 41 assists and a match-high 15 digs for her 20th career double-double.  Kendle Rollins sent down eight kills on 11 attempts (.727), and Gabrielle Shipe had 11 digs. 
For the match, Amy Zimmer hit .647 (11-0-17) to pace the Eagles, while Stephanie Palmer contributed a double-double with 21 assists and 10 kills.  Jennica Mullins registered a team-high four blocks.

Liberty registered 20 kills at a .500 pace during a 25-20 set-one victory, while the Eagles hit .406 in the opening set.  Winthrop pulled to within three, 22-19, but the Lady Flames surged for the win.  Thomas had five kills in the opening set, while Rollins (4-0-4) and Douglas (4-0-7) recorded four kills apiece for the Lady Flames.  Rachel Lenz led Winthrop with four kills during the first stanza.

Set two proved to be the tightest-contested set of the match, with 11 ties and three lead changes.  With the score tied at 19-19, Liberty ended the session on a 6-1 run, getting a pair of blocks during the closing surge.  Douglas registered seven kills and Happel added four, as Liberty hit .333.  Winthrop attacked at a .289 clip, led by four kills from Palmer.

The Eagles led, 9-8, during the early going of the third set, but the Lady Flames broke a 14-14 tie with an 11-6 run to close out the match sweep, 25-20.  As an example of the team's balance, Douglas, Thomas and Happel all had two kills as part of Liberty's match-clinching rally. Liberty finished set three with a .324 hitting percentage, and six Lady Flames blocks helped them hold Winthrop to .243. Thomas assisted on four of Liberty's set-three blocks.  
Liberty's next three matches are on the road, starting on Friday when the Lady Flames take on Radford at 7 p.m. inside the Dedmon Center. The Eagles will return to the Winthrop Coliseum on Tuesday at 6 p.m. for a non-conference contest against the Furman Paladins.


Kayla Klinger led the way with her second double-double on the weekend with 15 kills and 15 digs and Sydney Tracy added 10 kills of her own as Charleston Southern swept host Gardner-Webb on Saturday afternoon at Paul Porter Arena, 28-26, 25-20, 25-19.

Klinger led CSU's (10-16, 4-5 BSC) offensive efforts in the game as the Lady Bucs hit .274 from the floor in the match as a team.  Erin LaVenice added seven kills, while Wynter Davis and Meredith Parrott had six apiece for Charleston Southern, while Erin Anderson led Gardner-Webb's (8-17, 3-5 BSC) attack with 10 kills in the contest.

Neither team was able to build more than a one point lead in the first set before Gardner-Webb went up 21-19 following a kill by Emily Holte.  The Lady Bucs rallied to tie the frame up at 21-all following a GWU serving error and an ace by Tracy as the teams battled through 23 ties and 12 lead changes before GWU tied the set up for the final time at 26-all following an Anderson kill.  Tracy followed with a solo block and a GWU attack error gave the first set to the visitors at 28-26.

The Lady Bucs and the Runnin' Bulldogs continued their back-and-forth in the second set as the teams were even through the first 20 points of the set following an Anna Pashkova service ace before Parrott sparked a 9-2 Charleston Southern run with a pair of kills and Klinger added two more during the run as the Lady Bucs built the largest lead by either team in the set at 19-12.

The teams traded kills as Gardner-Webb brought the set back to 22-17 following a block by Amanda Murphy, but the Lady Bucs closed out the set on kills by LaVenice and Klinger to build the 2-0 lead heading into the break.

Charleston Southern came out of the break with a Struksnes' ace as the Lady Bucs held the 8-6 lead early in the set.  Gardner-Webb took the first lead of the set at 10-9 following a CSU attack error, but the Lady Bucs rallied back with a 6-1 run sparked by another Tracy ace and the sophomore outside hitter added a kill as CSU went up 15-11.

The lead stretched to eight at 21-13 as Parrott added an ace and Struksnes and Davis combined for a block.  Gardner-Webb rallied to cut the game back to within four at 22-18 following a solo block by Tyler Cockrell, but the Lady Bucs closed out the sweep on Struksnes' second service ace of the set to close out the 25-19 victory.

Struksnes set up CSU's offense with 40 set assists on the day, while Ashley Higginbothem added 11 of the team's 57 digs on the afternoon in the victory.  Davis led the team with three blocks, while Tracy added two solo blocks on the day.

Gardner-Webb hit .148 from the floor on the afternoon, led by Anderson's 10 kills, while Heather Feldman set up the GWU offense with 33 set assists. Pashkova led the Runnin' Bulldogs with 14 digs, while Amanda Murphy led all players at the net with four blocks in the loss.

Charleston Southern continues the 2012 season at home as the Lady Bucs welcome South Carolina State to the Buccaneer Field House on Tuesday, September 23rd.  First serve between CSU and the Bulldogs is set for 6 p.m.


Rachel Hall recorded 11 kills, while Allison Brown added nine to lead the Presbyterian College volleyball team to the 3-0 win over Radford in action this afternoon in Radford, Va. PC won by scores of 15-17, 25-13 and 15-16.

PC improved to 9-15 overall and 6-3 in the Big South, while Radford dropped to 13-13, 3-6.

Following Hall and her team-leading 11 kills and .471 hitting percentage and Brown with her nine kills and just two errors for her .350 hitting percentage, were Presley Mabrey and Kelly Berryman, both of whom had eight kills apiece.  Ashtin Frank recorded 38 assists while Mary Trimpe added 20 digs.

PC hit 44 kills and had just 13 errors for a .290, while Radford came away with 29 kills and 15 errors for a .126.

Leading Radford were Jesse Miedema and Rachel Fertitta, both of whom had eight kills each. Christine Beckham and Jena Braden recorded 12 assists while Katelyn Meeks added 20 digs.

The Blue Hose opened game one with a 5-0 run before Radford fought back to a 9-10 deficit.  PC extended its lead back to five, 15-10, helped in part by two kills and an ace from Mabrey and a kill by Kelly Berryman.   The Highlanders got to within four, 11-15 off a kill by Miedema, but that would be as close as Radford would get as the Blue Hose went up 21-14, capitalizing on two Berryman kills.   PC scored the next four of seven points, including the game-winning kill by Hall, to take the 25-17 win.

PC ran out to a 15-5 lead in game two, using 11 Blue Hose kills, three coming from Elizabeth Miler and Brown each.   The Blue Hose led 22-9 before a PC attack error gave CSU its 10th point.  Presbyterian College kept the wide margin, taking the 25-13 game two win.

The Blue Hose led from start to finish in game three, leading by as much as 12 at one point.  Leading 15-10, PC went on a 7-0 run, capped off by two back to back Brown kills and a Mabrey service ace to take the 22-10 lead.  The Blue Hose would go on to take the 25-16 game three and match win.

PC returns home Friday, Oct. 26 for a 7 p.m. match against Charleston Southern.


*Story to come