September 5, 2008
Tech drops first match of season
Hokies cannot withstand Marshall comeback
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Virginia Tech (3-1) 17252517112
Marshall (3-1) 25231925153
  • Cam Henderson Center - 244

BLACKSBURG, Va.- The Hokie volleyball team dropped its first match of the season Friday night, falling in the first match of the Marshall University Tournament to the host Thundering Herd, 3-2 in Huntington, W. Va.

Sophomore Felicia Willoughby tallied seven blocks and nine kills on the night and junior Taylor Parrish had 16 kills for the Hokies. Junior Michelle Lang and freshman Erin Leaser combined for 43 assists, but Tech was ultimately doomed by 18 service and six receiving errors.

Marshall jumped out to a fast start in the match, gaining a 9-4 advantage in the first set. Tech would never get closer than three points again in the frame, and the Thundering Herd eventually took the stanza 25-17. The errors piled up for the Hokies, as they committed five service errors, and had three attacks blocked in the set.

The Hokies quickly regrouped in the second set though, behind Parrish and Willoughby. Parrish amassed 10 kills in the frame and Willoughby had a key kill and block late. Both teams matched each other point for point down the stretch, until the Herd took a 20-17 advantage. A kill by Willoughby sparked a rally, and the Herd stumbled, as Emily Sullivan committed two crucial attack errors. Willoughby finished off Marshall with a solo block to end the set 25-23.

Tech looked to have the match in hand, after seizing the third set 25-19. The Hokies blocked five attacks, including four by Willoughby, and Lang had three service aces in the stanza to drop Marshall. The Thundering Herd rallied in the fourth though. Leading 9-8, Marshall went on a 9-2 scoring run, and never looked back, capturing the fourth set 25-17.

Entering the final set, the Hokies sprinted out to a 3-0 lead, but Marshall responded with four straight points of their own. The Herd went on a 6-2 scoring run to close out the match with a 15-11 win in the fifth set.

Tech looks to rebound on Saturday, with a matchup against Western Kentucky at 10:30 a.m. The Hokies then conclude the tournament with East Tennessee State at 4:30 p.m.

For updates on Virginia Tech volleyball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_VBall).

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