September 18, 2015
Hokies rout Blue Raiders to open Hokie Invite
Outside hitters Amanda McKinzie and Lindsey Owens both recorded double-doubles in the three-set win.
Middle Tennessee (2-11) 1421160
Virginia Tech (8-2) 2525253
  • Cassell Coliseum - 537

BLACKSBURG – Led by the Amanda McKinzie-Lindsey Owens tandem, the Virginia Tech volleyball team overpowered Middle Tennessee in straight sets to open the Hokie Invitational on Friday night. The Hokies improve to 8-2 while the Blue Raiders sit at 2-11.

Both McKinzie and Owens downed 15 kills each in their double-double outings with 12 and 10 digs, respectively. Attacking at .400 as a team, four Hokies hit over a .330-clip: McKinzie, Owens, Kennedy Bryan, and Jaila Tolbert. Ashley Battle defended the net with two solo blocks of her five total. Rhegan Mitchell set a new career record of 37 assists in the rout of the Blue Raiders.

Middle Tennessee’s Chelsea Ross paced the squad with a team-high of nine kills and seven digs. Both Rachel Shaughnessy and LaVondria Covington added seven kills, both hitting above .375 in the contest.

Tech jumped on the board first, maintaining a steady lead throughout the set. Middle Tennessee held it with in five early in the frame but the Hokies took off to a commanding 11-point lead resulting in a 25-14 decision. Attacking at a .583 clip, Owens paved the way for the Hokies in the stanza, going 7-for-12 with three digs. McKinzie and Kenedy McGrath collected six digs apiece.

The Hokies and Blue Raiders went back-and-forth in the second frame with 17 tied scores and six lead changes, however Tech prevailed. The pair of McKinzie and Owens struck again in set two, each tallying five kills. Bryan showcased her prowess in the second set, hitting at .667 with a key solo block to secure the Hokies 25-21 win.

Tech ran away with the match in the final set, outhitting Middle Tennessee .500-.147. Four Hokies attacked at over a .500 clip, including McKinzie who downed seven kills. Ashley Battle’s consecutive blocks early in the set jump-started Tech’s momentum, taking off to an eight-point margin. The Blue Raiders rallied for two points late in the frame but kills by Bryan and McKinzie secured the 25-16 victory.

The Hokies take the court again Saturday morning at 10 a.m., facing the Chattanooga in their second match of the tournament.

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