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BLACKSBURG, Va. – The Virginia Tech volleyball team picked up its second ACC win of the weekend, defeating league newcomer Syracuse, 3-1 (25-19, 25-15, 19-25, 25-21) on Sunday afternoon at Cassell Coliseum.
Kennedy Bryan knocked down 16 kills, hitting .361 on the attack to lead the Hokies (16-4, 4-2 ACC). Victoria Hamsher added 11 kills while LaTasha Samson-Akpan posted 10 kills. Jordan Fish tallied her fifth double-double of the season with 44 assists and 10 digs.
Samson-Akpan was also strong on the defensive side with four blocks. Megan Beckwith tallied a team-high 14 digs.
The two teams kept it close early in the opening set with Syracuse holding a slight 11-8 lead. Tech went on a run and evened it up at 11-11. The Hokies and the Orange traded points over the next few rallies and were tied at 14-14 before Virginia Tech used a 5-1 run to go on top, 19-15 as Samantha Gostling knocked down a kill. Syracuse cut the advantage down to two at 19-17, but the Hokies scored the next four to extend their lead to 23-17. Tech used a SU error and a kill from Bryan to secure the final two points for the 25-19 win.
In the second set, the Hokies fell behind as the Orange got out to a 10-7 lead early. Tech responded with a 12-0 run behind the serving of Amanda McKinzie, who tallied two aces during the run, to go on top 19-10. Syracuse would get no closer than six (19-13) as the Hokies rolled to a 25-15 win, taking a 2-0 lead in the match.
The Orange came out swinging in the third frame, going up 11-8. Tech closed the gap and tied it at 12-12 off a kill from Samson-Akpan. Syracuse answered with a 7-2 run to go up 19-14. The Hokies were unable to get anything going on the offensive side in the final rallies as Syracuse took the 25-19 win.
Tech and Syracuse were tied at 9-9 early in the final frame. The Hokies broke open the scoring again behind the serving of McKinzie, taking a 14-9 lead midway through the set. SU pulled to within two at 15-13 off a kill from Silvi Uattara, but Tech scored on four of the next five rallies to extend its lead to 19-14. The Orange looked to make a late surge and trailed by two at 23-21, but back-to-back kills from Bryan secured the set (25-21) and the match for the Hokies.
Uattara led Syracuse (6-12, 1-5 ACC) with 16 kills. Nicolette Serratore added 13 kills. Erica Handley put up 40 assists. Defensively, Lindsay MCabe and Monika Salkute had three blocks each while Melina Violas posted 15 digs.
The Hokies will be back on the court next weekend, hosting NC State on Friday, Oct. 18 at 7 p.m. in Cassell Coliseum.
For updates on Virginia Tech volleyball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_VBall).