Fredericksburg, Va. – The Randolph-Macon Yellow Jacket women's volleyball team fired off three straight winning sets after losing the first one in a Wednesday evening match at the University of Mary Washington. The Eagles came into the game ranked seventh in the country in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll. It's the highest ranked opponent Randolph-Macon has ever beaten.
R-MC dropped the first set 25-20 as the Eagles started off with a five-point and three-point run to get on top of the Yellow Jackets. UMW had a .233 hitting percentage compared to R-MC's .229 in the first set. R-MC fought back towards the end of the set, but the Eagles were able to seal the deal before the R-MC crept up any further.
But from then on, Randolph-Macon took the match over. A .296 hitting percentage in the second set and .417 in the fourth were just a pair of examples of how R-MC took over the game when they needed to most. The third set was the most competitive of the evening with the Yellow Jackets getting the set point on a UMW attack error after a serve by senior Rebecca McGilvery (Warrenton, Va./Kettle Run). McGilvery ended the night as R-MC's kill leader, knocking down a total of 13.
Freshmen Angela Tender (Manassas, Va./Stone Bridge) and Mackenzie Loewe's (Leonardtown, Md./St. Mary's Ryken) nights were made in service during the second set. Loewe sent off serve runs of four and three before being retired and Tender served eight times in a row before giving up an Eagle point. Tender's service sent the R-MC lead from 15-12 all the way to 21-12 in a set that finished 25-13. Tender had two service aces during her run while Loewe added one in her latter service time. The Yellow Jackets had six total service aces on the night with Erin Quinn (Morrisville, N.C./Cardinal Gibbons) scoring two and Samantha Sallade (Newport News, Va./Peninsula Catholic) adding one.
The third set was played much more closely by both teams, with the score exchanging back and forth. UMW had the lead until an Eagle attack error tied it at 22. UMW took a timeout after that – but the Yellow Jackets used it to create a game plan for success. R-MC won by the needed two at the end on an attack error by UMW, 25-23.
The Yellow Jackets put the match away in the fourth set with runs of three and five and never allowing UMW to get within four after getting up 14-10. R-MC would win the set 25-16 after Quinn and Sallade each went on three-point services.
Junior Mariah Clark (Stuarts Draft, Va./Riverheads) ended the night with 11 kills on 23 attacks and senior Miranda Hall (Mechanicsville, Va./Hanover) added another 10 kills. Tender and Quinn split the setting duties throughout the night with Quinn tallying up 20 and Tender adding 18.
Defensively, R-MC shined yet again. Sallade dug up 15 volleys while McGilvery added 11. At the net, senior Colleen Beaver (Fredericksburg, Va./Massaponax) had seven total blocks, two of them being solo efforts in front of her hometown crowd. Senior Morgan Seal (Midlothian, Va./Midlothian) had four blocks as well.
The Yellow Jackets return to Fredericksburg this weekend for an invitational tournament where they will play Berry, Susquehanna, Johns Hopkins and Averett over the course of two days. R-MC starts against Berry Friday at 3:00 P.M.