CEDARVILLE, Ohio – Playing its second match of the day, the Anderson University volleyball team evened its record on the young season by sweeping host Cedarville, 3-0 (28-26, 25-18, 25-20) at the Yellow Jacket Invite, Friday night at the Callan Athletic Center.
"This was a very good win and a character builder for our team," said Anderson head coach Todd Hay. "Cedarville punched us in the mouth to start and we were off our game. However, we picked it up on serving and our passing steadied out. Once those two things started falling into place, we felt good that our offense would click."
Anderson improved to 1-1 on the season, while Cedarville slipped to 1-1.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
For the second straight match, sophomore Maya Learmonth led all players – this time with 12 kills - on the strength of a .429 hitting percentage. Junior Regan Duty added eight kills and a pair of block assists, with freshman Taylor Weber notching six kills. Senior Emily Conlin dished out a match-high 35 assists and recorded seven digs, while sophomore Meghan DeVaux came up with a match-best 17 digs and added a pair of service aces.
Freshman Alexandra Petrilli notched seven digs and classmate Lindsay McCurley added six digs. Senior middle blocker Hailee Wilhelm tallied five kills and a pair of block assists.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Trojans used a late rally to overcome a fast start by the homestanding Yellow Jackets.
Cedarville opened the match by scoring the first four points and roared out to a quick 8-2 lead.
With Cedarville holding an 11-6 edge, the Trojans' Learmonth and Worsham sandwiched kills around an attack error by the Yellow Jackets to pull AU within two, at 11-9. Following another score by Cedarville, Worsham answered with a kill to set the score at 12-10.
But the Jackets steadily pushed out to an 18-12 advantage before AU rallied behind four straight errors by Cedarville and Wilhelm's second kill of the set capped a 5-0 run with a kill that set the score at 18-17.
Moments later, with Cedarville leading 20-18, Learmonth fueled a 4-0 surge that turned the two-point deficit into a two-point advantage. But the Yellow Jackets responded with three consecutive points to claim a narrow, 23-22, edge.
The score was knotted four more times before Conlin's lone kill of the frame gave AU a one-point lead, while Wilhelm and Conlin teamed up for a final block assist to clinch the win.
The Trojans carried the momentum into the second stanza and never trailed, as the Black and Gold took an early lead and steadily built a double-digit, 21-11, cushion.
The Yellow Jackets were unable to get any closer than seven down the stretch.
Duty's fourth kill of the night snapped an early 3-3 deadlock and the Trojans used a 7-2 scoring outburst to double up the Yellow Jackets, at 10-5.
AU went on to build a staggering, 20-7, advantage only to see the huge lead nearly evaporate, as Cedarville responded with an 11-1 scoring surge of their own, as they climbed within 21-18. Weber slowed the comeback with her fifth kill of the match and the Trojans posted three of the final four points to finish the sweep.
ANDERSON STAT OF THE GAME
Led by DeVaux's two service aces, the Trojans posted six aces in the nightcap.
• The Trojans and Yellow Jackets were squaring off for the first time in school history.
• Attendance for the final match of the day was 1,217.
Anderson will wrap up the two-day event by facing Northwood, Saturday at 11:30 a.m.