November 28, 2008
Comeback falls short as Tech falls to Virginia 3-2
Hokies end season 20-11
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Virginia Tech (20-11) 21212525122
Virginia (17-15) 25252019153
  • Memorial Gymnasium - 630

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. The Virginia Tech volleyball squad suffered their second-straight five-set heartbreaking loss to end their 2008 regular season campaign, falling to Virginia 3-2 (25-21, 25-21, 20-25, 19-25, 15-12) in Charlottesville, Va., on Friday.

The Hokies (20-11, 11-9 ACC) racked up more kills and digs than the Cavaliers (17-15, 9-11 ACC) but only hit at a .173 clip to Virginia’s .205 hitting percentage. Tech recorded 11 service aces, but also committed 10 service errors in the match.

Virginia gained an early lead in set one, when it scored five straight points to extend out to a 10-4 advantage. The Cavaliers pushed out to a 20-14 lead in what looked to be an easy victory. The Hokies did not give up though, going on a 7-2 run to close the gap to two at 23-21. Back-to-back kills by Virginia’s Lauren Dickson and Shannon Davis ended Tech’s hopes, as the Cavaliers captured the set 25-21.

Set two proved to be more competitive. Virginia led in the early stages, until the Tech evened the frame at 9-9, the first of eight ties in the frame. With the score tied at 19 apiece, the Cavaliers went on a 6-2 run, including taking the last three points, to win the second set 25-21.

Four straight points by Virginia opened up a 7-3 lead for the Cavaliers in set three. Tech responded with four straight points of their own later on, to take their first lead of the stanza at 14-13. The Cavaliers retook the lead, but it would not last, as the Hokies rode the momentum to a five-point advantage at 21-16. Tech would win the period by the same margin, taking set three 25-20.

Another close bout early, turned into a Tech runaway in set four. After squandering a three-point lead at 11-8, the Hokies see-sawed with the Cavaliers, until a 4-0 run gave Tech a 17-13 advantage. Up 18-15, the Hokies reeled off another three straight points to take control of the frame. Tech eventually pulled out set four, winning 25-19 to force a fifth and final stanza.

Tech faced several large deficits in set five, but continued to fight back. The Hokies found themselves down four at 9-5, and scored three straight points to close within one. Tech could not pull ahead though, and fell behind again at 11-8. The resilient Hokies won two straight points to pull within one again, but the Hokies had no more rallies left in them, and Virginia pulled away to win the set 15-12 and the match 3-2.

Sophomore Felicia Willoughby registered 15 kills, while seniors Kristen Cunningham and Sarah Munoz added 12 kills apiece in their final match in Hokie uniforms. Junior Jill Gergen tallied 24 digs in the match and freshman Justine Record recorded 13 of her own. Freshman Erin Leaser earned her seventh double-double of the season with 52 assists and 11 digs.

The Hokies end the season with their highest win total since 2002, when Tech achieved an identical 20-11 season. The 11-9 mark Tech posted in the ACC is the best conference record since Tech joined the ACC in 2004. The Hokies finished in seventh place in the conference this season.

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

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