Smith leads Hokies to opening win over Idaho State

Idaho State (0-1) 25201725112
Virginia Tech (1-0) 21252522153
  • Milwaukee, Wis. - 152

MILWAUKEE – Kaity Smith joined the prestigious 30-kill club on Friday afternoon as the true freshman guided Virginia Tech’s volleyball team to its first win of the season over Idaho State, 3-2, in the Pepsi Panther Tournament inside the Klotsche Center.

The Kentucky native becomes only the third player in Tech history to accomplish the feat. It marks the first time a Hokie tallied 30 or more kills since 1992 when Lisa Pikalek racked up 38 against Southern Miss on Nov. 7.

The Hokies (1-0) begin the Jill Lytle Wilson era on the winning side as they hit over .500 as a team in sets three and five on their way to taking down the Bengals (0-1) in a five-set thriller.

The two squads traded punches in sets one and two with ISU winning 25-21 and Tech claiming 25-20 in set two. Both teams had over 12 kills and five errors or more in the opening sets.

Set three was when Tech found its grove tallying a .581 hitting percentage, its highest of the match. The Hokies went on to win by its biggest margin of the day, 25-17.

No team led by more than four points in set four as the Bengals edged out a 25-22 victory behind Chloe Hirst’s five kills. Hirst finished the day with a team-high 19 kills for ISU.

Tech jumped out to an 8-4 advantage in set five and that proved to be enough, winning by four points, 15-11, in the final frame.


- It was a day for career highs, as returners Rhegan Mitchell and Stacey Christy set new highs in assists (65) and kills (11). Sophomore Abby McKinzie tied her career-best in digs (11).

- The newcomers shined on the front and back lines with Ester Talamazzi recording 14 kills, Marisa Cerchio tallying seven kills and two blocks and Smith with a debut for the ages. Smith’s 30 kills are tied for the seventh-most in school history.


Tech had three players post 11 kills or more in the match – Smith (30), Talamazzi (14), Christy (11).



“It was a good win. There were a lot of highs and lows in this match, and I was really proud of our team being able to change things during the match with our game plans. We had some young people step up and it’s always good to start with a win.”


The Hokies will take on South Dakota State later tonight at 6 p.m. ET. Fans can follow along on YouTube and live stats.

For updates on Virginia Tech volleyball, follow the Hokies on Twitter and on Instagram @vthokievolleyball Instagram

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