ASHLAND, Va. – The Marymount University women's volleyball team opened the Randolph-Macon College Invitational on Friday night, falling to Randolph-Macon College, 3-1, before earning its first win of the season, 3-0, over Averett University.
Randolph-Macon 3, Marymount 1
The Saints and Yellow Jackets needed extra points to decide the first set in what would be a closely-fought match.
Junior Mykael Johnson opened the match with two kills, helping the Saints take a 3-0 lead. That would be the largest lead by either team in the first set, which had 16 tie scores and five lead changes.
Randolph-Macon held a late, 23-21, lead, but freshman Sophie Meredith and Johnson each put down kills to tie the score. Johnson notched five kills in the final moments to keep the Saints going in the set, including one to tie the score, 27-27, but the Yellow Jackets were able to come up with the final two points for the win.
Neither team was able to gain a lead of more than three points in the second set, as well, but this time the Saints would come out on top.
With the score tied, 16-16, junior Myah Cordrey regained the lead with a block and a kill, giving the Saints the edge for good.
The defense continued to hold strong, as two-straight blocks ended the set. The first came from junior Michaella Ulses and Meredith, before Cordrey and Johnson closed the set with the second for the win.
Despite Johnson and Ulses putting down back-to-back kills late in the third set to take a 23-22 lead, the Yellow Jackets took the lead in the match, 2-1, with three-straight points to close the frame.
The teams continued to play a close contest in the fourth set, with the Yellow Jackets holding a slight, 10-9, edge early on, but they closed on a 15-3 run to take the match.
Johnson led the way for the Saints with 18 kills, while freshman Elissa Munsterman and Cordrey added 12 and 11, respectively. Johnson added a team-high 18 digs for the double-double and to tie a career high.
Junior Maggie Viniard tallied 43 assists in the game.
Marymount 3, Averett 0
Much like the first match, the Saints needed extra points in the first set, before taking a 1-0 lead on the Cougars.
Freshman Sarah Pham used two-straight service aces to cap a 4-0 run to open the set. Two kills from Viniard and a block by Cordrey and Viniard brought the lead to 7-3.
Averett responded with a 14-5 run to take a 17-12 lead, but the Saints battled back. Three kills from Cordrey and two more from Johnson led the way to bring Marymount back to within two, 22-20.
Johnson continued with the hot hand, putting down three more kills to lead the comeback and take a 26-25 lead. Munsterman capped the set with a kill for the 1-0 lead.
The Saints found their stride in the second set, taking a 25-9 victory, closing the set on a 21-5 run. Cordrey and sophomore Caylee Shelton, each, tallied four kills in the set to lead the way, while Munsterman added three.
The third set started with the teams in a back-and-forth battle, before the Saints took an 11-10 lead. A kill from junior Alexa Marcum started a 4-0 spurt to give the team some space.
Munsterman pushed the lead to 15-10 with two aces.
The Saints continued to hold the lead from there, and kills from Marcum and Munsterman capped the victory.
Munsterman and Cordrey tied for the team lead with 10 kills, each, while Viniard kept the offense moving with 16 assists.
Junior Jasmine Roy led the defense with 12 digs.
The Saints will continue the weekend tournament on Saturday, September 7, taking on Susquehanna University in a match set for 12 p.m.