CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The Valkyries volleyball team was unable to pick up a win during the second and final day of the Queens Invitational on Saturday, September 7. Converse fell to No. 25 Wingate in a hard-fought affair to open the day before dropping a match against Lander in the finale.
Scores: #25 Wingate 3, Converse 1; Lander 3, Converse 0
Records: Wingate (3-0), Lander (4-0), Converse (0-4)
Location: Levine Center, Charlotte, N.C.
INSIDE THE BOXSCORE
- Junior outside hitter Brittany Tepedino tallied 16 kills and 19 digs in the two games.
- Freshman Lottie Hutson contributed her best game as a Valkyrie after collecting 25 assists on the afternoon.
- Elizabeth Yohe anchored the defense once again with 29 digs.
- Lauren Tharrington put on a clinic at the service line, earning four service aces against Wingate.
- As a team, Converse totaled 18 blocks in the two matches.
HOW IT HAPPENED – Game One vs. #25 Wingate (16-25, 25-23, 18-25, 21-25)
Converse came out firing on all cylinders, collecting the first four points and seven of nine to begin the opening set, capped off by a service ace from Kiara Cannon. However, Wingate battled back with an 8-3 spurt to knot the frame at 10-all.
After trading the next four points, Wingate ripped off six straight to take a comfortable 18-12 advantage. The Vals trimmed the deficit to 20-16, but Wingate tallied the final five points to take a 1-0 match lead.
Once again Converse was the aggressor to start the second set, controlling the net while jumping out to an 11-6 lead. The Bulldogs fought back to tie the score at 13 and from that point the game became a seesaw battle with five ties and two lead changes.
With the score knotted at 19, an attack error followed by a service ace from Lauren Tharrington pushed the Valkyries ahead by two late in the set. That run continued to 5-2 after a monstrous kill from Cannon. Wingate came to within a single point (24-23), but another attack error allowed Converse to tie the match at 1-1 with a 25-23 set win.
Set number three was back-and-forth as the two teams raced out to a tie at 11-11. However, Wingate used three points in a row to seize control of the set. Yohe registered a kill to bring the Vals to within 17-16, but WU finished the frame with an 8-2 burst to take the 2-1 lead in the match.
With their backs against the wall, Converse came out strong in the fourth set in an attempt to take the match to a decisive fifth. After a Cannon kill to put the Vals up 7-6, Wingate doubled-up the score (14-7) to take a commanding 20-14 lead.
The Valkyries continued to fight, drawing the score to 20-18 following a kill by Lottie Hutson, but it was not enough as the Bulldogs took five of the last seven points to capture the set and match.
HOW IT HAPPENED – Game Two vs. Lander (25-19, 25-18, 25-16)
Converse took three of the first five points in the opening set, but quickly found itself in a 15-8 hole following a 13-5 run by the Bearcats. Back-to-back kills from Kiara Cannon and Elizabeth Yohe sparked a 9-5 spurt by the Vals, closing the gap to 20-17 late in the contest. However, Lander tallied five of the final seven points to take the set and a 1-0 match lead.
Brittany Tepedino started the second set with consecutive kills to give the Valkyries the early advantage. From that point Lander controlled the attack on its way to a 10-5 lead. Converse fell behind by eight (17-9) before Tepedino put on a display at the service line, earning five consecutive points for the Vals.
With the score at 17-14 in favor of the Bearcats, Lander doubled-up the Purple and Gold over the remainder of the frame (8-4) to take a commanding 2-0 match lead.
Elizabeth Coffey opened up the third and final set with a kill to give Converse the one point lead, but that would be the lone time the Valkyries were ahead, falling 25-16 in the third set.
The Valkyries will return to the court on September 13-14 as they travel to Florence, S.C. to participate in the Francis Marion Invite. Converse will face Francis Marion at 1 p.m. on Friday before taking on West Alabama at 7 p.m. The Purple and Gold will conclude the event on Saturday after facing Eckerd at 11 a.m. followed by UNC Pembroke at 3 p.m.