BLACKSBURG, Va. – The Virginia Tech volleyball team kicked off the 2011 campaign with an impressive 3-0 win over Cleveland State Friday night at Cassell Coliseum in front of 517 fans. Led by a double-double from Justine Record, Tech controlled the match from the get-go, winning 25-15, 25-20, 33-31.
Before the match began, the senior class took time to unveil the NCAA Tournament banner the 2010 team earned last season after making the first tournament appearance in program history.
Tech (1-0) jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead in the first game to force a timeout by the Vikings and then raced to a 17-8 lead to force the second timeout of the game. Cleveland State cut the lead to seven, but the Hokies took control down the stretch to cruise to the 25-15 win. The Hokies hit .314 in the game with 4.0 blocks while holding the Vikings to -.026 hitting percentage.
The second game started much closer as the two teams were tied at 6-6 until a pair of blocks from the Hokies pushed the score to 9-6 in favor of the home squad. CSU kept it interesting, but couldn’t get closer than three points as the two squads exchanged modest runs back and forth. The Vikings committed a service error and then Cara Baarendse put down a powerful kill to seal the 25-20 victory. Baarendse led the way in the game with five kills and libero Morgan O’Neill recorded six digs.
In the final game, the Vikings came out strong and got out to an 8-6 lead thanks to some big blocks, forcing a timeout by Tech head coach Chris Riley. The Vikings got out to a three-point lead but a kill from Baarendse and then a block combo from Baarendse and Kirsty Blue tied it up before Blue put down a kill to give the Hokies their first lead since leading 2-1 early in the game. After a timeout, the Vikings got a kill to stop a 4-0 run by the Hokies, but a service error gave Tech the lead right back. Leading by two, Blue came up with another big kill for Tech to make it 22-19 and force CSU’s final timeout. The Vikings fought off eight match points, battling to tie it up at 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 and 31, but a kill from Alyssa Gammel gave Tech the win on its ninth match point.
Record and Baarendse led the way with 11 kills apiece. Victoria Hamsher hit .875 on 7-of-8 hitting and had four total blocks. O’Neill had 17 digs and Record recorded 15 of her own. Senior setter Erin Leaser had 29 assists.
Tech hit .192 as a team with 10 team blocks, 38 assists and 52 digs while CSU hit just .066 with six team blocks and 44 digs.
The action at the Hokie Tournament will wrap up on Saturday with four matches. In the first match of the day, Cleveland State will take on Indiana at 10:30 a.m., followed by the Hokies and High Point at 12:30 p.m. In the second session of the day, High Point will play Cleveland State at 5 o’clock, followed by the Hokies and Hoosiers at 7 o’clock.
Indiana 3, High Point 1
Indiana University (1-0) hit .229 as a team and put down eight service aces as the Hoosiers defeated High Point 3-1 (25-15, 19-25, 25-19, 25-12) in the first match of the tournament. Kelci Marschall led the Hoosier offense with 15 kills and contributed seven digs and the Indiana defense held High Point (0-1) to just a .094 hitting percentage, recording two solo blocks and 12 block assists.
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