WILSON, N.C. – Freshman middle Jasmine Finkley set two new school records, collecting seven solo blocks and 10 total blocks, to lead the Converse volleyball team to its second consecutive Conference Carolinas win, downing Barton in a five-set thriller on Saturday afternoon. After falling behind 2-0, Converse stormed back to take the next three for the win.
Score: Converse 3, Barton 2 (17-25, 23-25, 25-12, 25-21, 15-8)
Records: Converse (5-14, 2-3 CC), Barton (4-6, 1-3 CC)
Location: Bulldogs Athletic Complex, Wilson, N.C.
INSIDE THE BOXSCORE
- Brittany Tepedino posted a massive double-double with 22 kills to go along with 18 digs.
- Lauren Tharrington turned in another brilliant performance as she was the catalyst for the Valkyrie attack, posting a game-high 35 assists.
- Elizabeth Yohe posted 19 digs, while Kelsey Elliott and Sara Grace Westmoreland added 12 digs each.
- As a team, Converse set a new school record with nine block solos.
- Converse outhit Barton .149 to .101.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Baton doubled-up Converse (12-6) early in the opening set. A kill by Alexis Pitts drew the Valkyries to within 17-13, but the Bulldogs roped off three in a row to hold a comfortable 20-13 lead. Back-to-back kills from Tepedino narrowed the deficit to 20-15, but that was as close as the frame would get as Barton went up 1-0 in the match with a 25-17 win.
Converse was the aggressor to start set two, racing out to an 8-2 lead. Barton closed the gap to 12-11 following a Kelsey Relquime kill, but three straight from the Purple and Gold pushed the advantage back to 15-11.
Barton continued to chip away at the Valkyrie lead before eventually taking a one-point lead (18-17). From that point Barton kept Converse at-bay and took a commanding 2-0 lead with a 25-23 set win.
With their collective backs against the wall, Converse came out firing on all cylinders to begin the third set, taking a quick 8-2 lead. The advantage ballooned to double-digits (17-7) following a monstrous Tepedino kill.
Barton cut the score to 20-12 after a service error, but the Valkyries would not be denied, ripping off the final four points of the set to send the match to the pivotal fourth frame.
With new-found energy, Converse built a 7-4 lead early in the all-important fourth set. However, six straight points later, Barton sat in control with a 10-7 advantage. Converse came right back and knotted the frame at 10-10 before taking a 13-12 lead following an attack error by the Bulldogs.
From that point the contest would see three ties and four lead changes, but with the score at 17-all, Converse took control, reeling off five of seven points to take the 22-19 lead. Barton tried one last time to get back in the set, taking the next two points, but Converse shut the door and sent the game to the deciding fifth frame after finishing set four with three in a row.
Converse had not had much luck in the past two Conference Carolinas matches that went five sets, but this one would prove to be different. A kill by Elizabeth Coffey gave the Valkyries a 5-2. Barton came to within one (5-4), but Converse slammed the door with a massive 6-1 run over the next seven points to go up 11-5.
From that point it was all academic as Converse took its second straight conference win, dropping the Bulldogs 15-8 in the fifth.
Converse will return to the court on Friday, October 11, traveling to Tigerville, S.C. to face the Crusaders of North Greenville University. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m.