August 27, 2010
Hokies open season with sweep of Lady Mocs
Willoughby and Wiker combined for 19 kills
Chattanooga (0-1) 2619100
Virginia Tech (1-0) 2825253
  • Knoxville, Tenn.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The Virginia Tech volleyball team opened its 2010 campaign with a 3-0 (28-26, 25-19, 25-10) sweep of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Lady Mocs in the first match of the Comcast Lady Vol Classic hosted by the University of Tennessee.

Tech (1-0, 0-0 ACC) earned an impressive .356 hitting percentage in the match, the team’s best since Sept. 19, 2009, while holding the Lady Mocs (0-1, 0-01 SoCon) to just a .142 clip. Junior setter Erin Leaser had a career-high six block assists to help the Hokies out-block the Lady Mocs, 9-2.

The first set was a nail-biter with 13 ties and four lead changes. After alternating points in the first six plays of the game, the Lady Mocs jumped out to a 7-4 lead, but Tech came right back to tie it, 7-7. The match held a one-point spread for the next several plays, but the Lady Mocs then picked up momentum and ran out to their largest lead of the frame, 22-17. However, Tech fought right back, winning five turns in a row and tying the score at 22. The two teams traded points over the next seven plays, but two kills by sophomore Cara Baarendse and a block by Erin Leaser and freshman Victoria Hamsher pushed the Hokies out in front, taking the set by a score of 28-26.

The Hokies rode their momentum into the second set, and maintained a steady two or three point lead throughout the first half. Chattanooga rallied past Tech, 16-15, to take its first lead of the set, but the Hokies pushed right back, running out to a 22-17 lead and finishing the set, 25-19.

Tech asserted its dominance in the third set, pulling out to a quick 9-1 lead, and never looked back. Driven by three kills each from redshirt-sophomore Jennifer Wiker and freshman Samantha Gostling, the Hokies won the final set, 25-10, for their largest margin of victory since downing Albany, 25-10, in the fourth set on Sept. 19, 2009.

Hokie Felicia Willoughby and Lady Moc Courtney Barnes led their respective teams with 10 kills apiece. Wiker followed closely with nine, and Baarendse and Gostling each stuffed seven of their own. Erin Leaser led the match with a career-high six block assists and Willoughby added five more. Leaser also notched a match-high 32 assists and Morgan O’Neill recorded 13 digs.

Virginia Tech returns to the court tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. to take on old Atlantic 10 rival, Xavier, followed by a matchup with the host-team No. 19 Tennessee at 7 p.m. GameTracker livestats will be available on for both matches.

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

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