BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – UNCG fell behind 2-0 heading into intermission and couldn't recover late in the match as the Spartans fell to Samford, 3-1 (25-20, 25-11, 20-25, 25-10), in Southern Conference volleyball action on Saturday afternoon.
The Spartans now sit at 18-8 on the season and 6-5 in the SoCon, while the Bulldogs improved to 12-14 overall and 6-6 in the conference.
"Tonight was very disappointing for the team," said coach Patrick Nicholas. "It seemed that we lacked some mental focus tonight and when we do that we don't play well as a team. We made too many unforced errors tonight and you can't do that against a quality opponent like Samford. Now we have to regroup tonight and show what we are made of tomorrow at Chattanooga."
The Spartans were led by Ariel Newman and Caley Redden who each had a team-high 11 kills offensively. Newman also added 13 digs for the lone double-double for UNCG. Kellie Orewiler chipped in a team-high 15 digs and Ari Lysacek had 33 assists.
Elizabeth Neisler had an impressive 21 kills to lead the Bulldogs, while Hillary Fountain and Lauren Hutchinson added 13 and 12 kills, respectively. Casey Garvey had a double-double for Samford with 49 assists and 12 digs.
In the opening set, the Spartans never led and fell behind 14-9 midway through the set. UNCG fought back though to make it a one-point contest at 17-16 on a kill by Olivia Humphries. The Spartans again narrowly trailed at 18-17, but the Bulldogs ended the set on a 7-3 run to win the first set, 25-20.
UNCG came out flat in the second set as Samford quickly built an 11-4 lead on a kill by Fountain. The Bulldogs continued to cruise as the closed out the set on an 11-3 run to win the set, 25-11, and take a 2-0 lead at the break.
The Spartans appeared to come out of the intermission with renewed vigor as they used a 5-0 to take an early 11-5 lead. UNCG led by as many as seven at 20-13, but the Bulldogs rallied late to pull within 22-19. The Spartans held off the rally though and went on to win the set, 25-20.
The fourth and final set was similar to the second set as Samford took an early 10-4 lead. The Bulldogs blew open the set for good by using a 7-0 run to go ahead, 21-7, en route to winning the set, 25-10.
UNCG will get back to the court on Sunday as they play on the road against Chattanooga at 5 p.m.
Samford def. UNCG 25-20, 25-11, 20-25, 25-10
UNCG (18-8, 6-5 SoCon) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Caley Redden 11-0-2; Ariel Newman 11-0-2; Olivia Humphries 7-1-2; Alissa Beaudway 6-1-0; Ari Lysacek 5-0-1; Kayren Finney 3-0-1; Karrian Chambers 2-0-0; Kellie Orewiler 1-0-0; Samantha Deutchman 0-0-1; Totals 46-2-6.0. (Assists) - Ari Lysacek 33. (Dig leaders) - Kellie Orewiler 15; Ariel Newman 13; Caley Redden 8
Samford (12-14, 6-6 SoCon) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Elizabeth Neisler 21-0-3; Hillary Fountain 13-0-0; Lauren Hutchinson 12-0-4; Allie Bettinger 7-0-0; Taylor Palmer 7-0-0; Casey Garvey 3-2-3; Alexis Bauer 0-2-0; Totals 63-4-6.0. (Assists) - Casey Garvey 49. (Dig leaders) - Alexis Bauer 21; Allie Bettinger 12; Casey Garvey 12; Hillary Fountain 9
Site: Birmingham, Ala. (Pete Hanna Center)
Date: Oct 30, 2010 Attend: 312 Time: 1:34
Referees: Ken Cain, Danny Humbers
- UNCG -