BLACKSBURG, Va. – Freshman Lindsey Owens knocked down 15 kills to lead four Hokies in double-digit kills as the Virginia Tech volleyball team downed ACC foe Miami, 3-1 (25-22, 25-19, 19-25, 25-13) on Friday evening at Cassell Coliseum.
Owens’ 15 kills for Tech (19-8, 7-6 ACC) led all attackers in the match. Victoria Hamsher added 13 kills while LaTasha Samson-Akpan posted 11 kills and Samantha Gostling tallied 10. Jordan Fish put up 52 assists for the offense.
In the opening set, the two teams traded points early and were tied at 8-8, but the Hokies went on a 4-1 run to break open the scoring and take the 12-9 lead off a kill from Samson-Akpan. Miami kept it close and tied it back up at 14-14, but Tech again pulled ahead, going on top 17-14. The Hokies maintained the lead, but Miami looked to make a late charge, pulling within two at 23-21. A kill from Caine followed by a kill from Hamsher secured the points for the Hokies to take the 25-22 win.
The two teams battled back and forth in the second set with 11 ties and were knotted as late as 16-16. Tech broke open the scoring with a 5-1 run to go up 21-16 off a Miami error. The Hurricanes were unable to answer in the final rallies as the Hokies rolled to the 25-19 win to take a 2-0 lead in the match.
Miami took control of the third frame from the onset, getting out to a 15-9 lead and forcing the Hokies to call their second timeout of the set. The Hokies were unable to get a run going on the offensive side as the ‘Canes took the set 25-19.
In the final set, the Hokies came out strong, hitting .520 on the attack as a team with 15 kills and just two errors. The Hokies took the early 10-4 lead and traded points with Miami over the next several rallies, but the Hurricanes could not put together a run to close the gap as Tech maintained the advantage, leading by six at 18-12. Tech outscored Miami 7-1 in the final rallies to claim the 25-13 win.
Emani Sims led Miami (15-8, 8-5 ACC) with 13 kills while Savannah Leaf added 12. Alex Johnson and Alexis Mourning had 10 kills each. Caitilin Donahoe and Blair Fuentez put up 23 and 20 assists, respectively. Sims was also strong on the defense with seven blocks.
The Hokies will be back on the court on Saturday, Nov. 9 when they host No. 18 Florida State at 7 p.m. in Cassell Coliseum. The match caps a tripleheader in Cassell as both Virginia Tech basketball teams open their seasons on Saturday beginning with men’s basketball against USC Upstate at noon, followed by the women’s team versus Howard at 3 p.m.
For updates on Virginia Tech volleyball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_VBall).