SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University volleyball team dropped a pair of tight matches on Saturday afternoon at the Maggs Physical Activities Center, falling to the Christopher Newport Captains 3-1 (24-26, 25-20, 25-20, 25-19) and bowing to the Swarthmore Garnet 3-2 (25-27, 25-16, 20-25, 25-19, 15-13).
HOW IT HAPPENED vs. CNU
- The Captains opened the match with back-to-back service aces by Anna Dean, but Salisbury answered to even things at 3-3 on an Ella Franks ace.
- The teams stayed joined at the hip for most of the first set, with neither side getting more than two points clear until CNU took a 16-13 lead on a kill by Kyla McIntyre. Mackenzie Wright followed with her own kill to make it 17-13 Captains.
- Salisbury answered with four in a row to get right back in it. After a service error, Jenna Feinauer served up an ace, then Hannah Sullivan and Natalie Uibel teamed up for a block and the Sea Gulls tied it at 17-17 after a CNU error.
- CNU responded with a four-point run of its own, taking a 21-17 lead on a block by McIntyre and Macy Burk. Eventually Burk finished a kill that gave the Captains set point at 24-21.
- Undaunted, the Sea Gulls got back-to-back kills from Jackie Mitchell to whittle it down to 24-23, then Feinauer and Caitlyn Edman teamed up for a block to tie it at 24-24. SU earned set point on an error, then Brooke Young's fake set went for a kill to give Salisbury a dramatic 26-24 opening set victory, capping a five-point run.
- Set two began much like the opener did with both teams neck-and-neck through the first 12 points. From there the Captains rattled off three in a row, taking a kill from Wright to go up 15-12.
- Salisbury stayed with it and eventually tied the score at 18-18 after back-to-back CNU attack errors. The teams traded a point each to get it to 19-19, but from there the Captains closed the set on a 6-1 run, slamming the door on a kill from Burk to win it 25-20 and even the match with their Coast-to-Coast Athletic Conference (C2C) rivals.
- Leading 6-5 early in the third set, CNU took control with three straight points, capped by an Edman error to make it 9-5. Salisbury broke up the run as Sullivan laid down a kill, and the Sea Gulls kept the gap at four through the 13-9 mark when the Captains scored three straight, including two on McIntyre kills, to make it 16-9.
- The Captain push continued until they took a 24-17 lead on a kill from Maddie Carter. The Sea Gulls rallied for three straight on an error, Feinauer block and Darian DiMatteo kill, but it was too little, too late as Wright finished off the set with a kill to give CNU a 25-20 win.
- CNU seized thorough control early in the fourth set, scoring the first seven points in a row. Burk and Sammy Carroll started things off with a block, and eventually Wright's kill gave the Captains a 7-0 cushion, which eventually ballooned to 13-3.
- Salisbury kept battling and got as close as five points on several occasions, with Uibel's kill making it 17-12. Five was as close as the Sea Gulls would get, though, and Carter finished off the match with a kill, making it a 25-19 CNU margin in the fourth.
SALISBURY GAME NOTES
- Jackie Mitchell led the Sea Gulls with 13 kills and finished one dig shy of a double-double with nine digs.
- Natalie Uibel notched nine kills, the most of her young career, and also tallied a pair of block assists.
- Jenna Feinauer involved herself in three of Salisbury's six blocks, finishing with one block solo and two assists.
- Brooke Young wrapped up with a team-high 16 assists, while Ella Franks finished right behind her with 15 assists, plus seven digs and one ace.
- Darian DiMatteo led all defenders with 20 digs.
CHRISTOPHER NEWPORT GAME NOTES
- Maddie Carter paced the Captains up front with 15 kills, and Kyle McIntyre notched 10 kills of her own.
- Reigning Conference Player of the Year Sammy Carroll finished with 43 assists and six digs. She also notched a pair of kills.
- Noelle Starr went low for 19 digs to lead CNU.
HOW IT HAPPENED vs. SWARTHMORE
- The Sea Gulls started off the first set hot, taking the first four points on a run that included two aces from Darian DiMatteo. After the Garnet broke up the run with one point, Salisbury managed the next three in a row to go up 7-1.
- Natalie Uibel's kill built the SU lead to 10-3, but SC eventually battled all the way back to get within one point at 14-13 after three straight Sea Gull errors. After a timeout, Salisbury rattled off three straight on a Jenna Feinauer kill, Jackie Mitchell ace and Angelina Casserly kill, making it 17-13.
- Swarthmore hung tough and eventually tied it at 21-21 after a kill from Trisha Razdan. Two straight errors and a Hannah Sullivan kill gave the Sea Gulls set point at 24-21, but the Garnet scored the next three, with Erin Kaye and Kaylee Zhang teaming up to stuff Sullivan and tie it at 24-24.
- After the teams traded a point each, Feinauer and Mitchell found the floor for back-to-back kills, and Salisbury survived the first set with a 27-25 win.
- Confidence high from making their hosts sweat it out in set one, the Garnet began set two on a roaring 8-0 run. Chloe Mayhue accounted for three kills in SC's initial onslaught.
- Salisbury never found the handle in the second set and never got closer than six points. A Sea Gull service error eventually handed the set to Swarthmore, 25-16.
- The third set started far more even keel, with the teams battling back-and-forth through the 6-6 mark. After a Razdan kill but Swarthmore up a point, Salisbury went on a 6-2 run that featured back-to-back solo blocks from Feinauer and kills from Casserly, Ella Franks and Sullivan, making it 12-9 Sea Gulls.
- The Garnet notched a pair to get back within 12-11, but Salisbury then went on a 5-0 run, capped by two Mitchell kills to boost the lead to 17-11. Swarthmore eventually closed the gap to 18-16 and stayed within two at 20-18, but a service error and Feinauer ace put the Sea Gulls back in the driver's seat at 22-18.
- Salisbury soon after closed the door on the third set as Uibel brought the hammer down for a kill to get it to 25-20.
- The teams spent the early fourth set locked in a tight battle, with Uibel launching a kill to bring Salisbury within one point at 8-7. Swarthmore scored the next three, though, capped by a Razdan kill to make it 11-7. The Garnet soon increased their lead to 15-9 after a Grace Hegland kill.
- The Sea Gulls battled back within one as Uibel's ace got it to 19-18, but the Garnet closed the set on a 6-1 run, sealing the deal on three straight SU errors to win it 25-19 and force a fifth set.
- The teams traded two points each to open the final set, then SC scored the next two and Salisbury got a kill from Feinauer to make it 4-3. From there, the Garnet scored the next four on a Kaye kill, Sierra Tyson ace, Razdan kill and Sea Gull error to take an 8-3 lead.
- Salisbury eventually fell behind 10-5 but scored three in a row off an error, Sullivan-Caitlyn Edman block and Uibel kill to get it to 10-8. Swarthmore scored two straight to go up 12-8, but Uibel struck for another kill, followed by two straight errors and a Mitchell kill to tie it at 12-12.
- Zhang launched a kill to put the Garnet back on top, then Razdan's kill got it to match point at 14-12. Salisbury answered on a kill from Edman, but Razdan finished the job with one last kill, wrapping up a razor-thin 15-13 set five victory to claim the match.
SALISBURY GAME NOTES
- Jenna Feinauer tied for the Sea Gull lead with 12 kills against just one error, swinging at a .500 clip for the match. She also tallied five blocks, including three solo stuffs.
- Angelina Casserly notched a season-high 12 kills of her own, while Jackie Mitchell and Natalie Uibel added nine and seven kills, respectively.
- Brooke Young and Ella Franks each registered double-doubles, setting up 20 assists apiece with Young tallying 13 digs and Franks 12.
- Darian DiMatteo led SU with 23 digs and also added five assists.
- The Sea Gulls dealt 10 aces in the match, with DiMatteo, Mitchell, Young and Feinauer each supplying a pair.
SWARTHMORE GAME NOTES
- Trisha Razdan led a trio of Garnet attackers to reach double digits, tallying 19 kills. Kaylee Zhang finished second on the team with 14 kills plus 20 digs, followed by Chloe Mayhue's 11 kills and 13 digs.
- Dani Pena set up 40 assists and also added eight digs.
- Sierra Tyson led all defenders with 28 digs, plus six assists.
- The Sea Gulls will look to rebound at a tri-match in Arlington, Va., on Saturday, Sept. 25.
- Salisbury will battle St. Mary's (Md.) at 1 p.m., followed by a rematch against hosts Marymount (Va.) at 3 p.m.
- The Sea Gulls swept Marymount 3-0 (25-11, 25-23, 25-14) in their season opener at the Maggs PAC on Sept. 1.