Western Highlands 1A/2A Conference Draughn: 49 Avery County: 7 Catawba Valley Athletic 2A Conference Bandys:…
The App State volleyball team registered its eighth consecutive win and fifth sweep of the season on Friday, defeating USC-Upstate, 3-0, on the second day of play at the Black & Gold Invitational in Boone. The Mountaineers saw a crowd of 976 for its Education Day match.
Junior Lulu Ambrose posted a team-high seven kills, while redshirt-freshman Katie Cruise led in the assists category with 15. Sophomore Kenady Roper and senior Sophie Cain tallied double-digit digs with 15 and 12, respectively. Sophomore Maya Winterhoff posted a team-high four blocks, three of which were solo. Freshman Akila Hardie also posted her first collegiate kills in the Black and Gold.
App State lead USC-Upstate in aces (8-1) and blocks (11-5).
App State took an early lead in the first set until the Spartans made up ground with a 5-0 run to meet the Mountaineers at 8-8. App State and USC-Upstate went point-for-point, until the Mountaineers went on a 5-0 scoring run that included kills from Ambrose and Winterhoff as well as a block from Winterhoff/Denny for a 20-16 lead. Freshman Ava Leahy/junior Lauren Pledger secured the first set for the Mountaineers, 25-19, with a block.
Denny opened the second set with an ace, which gave the Mountaineers the momentum to establish an early 5-1 lead. The Black and Gold kept a steady lead throughout the set. A kill from Leahy, a pair of Spartan errors, and a solo block from Winterhoff extended the Mountaineers’ lead to 19-10. Despite a late 4-0 run from USC-Upstate, App State took the second set, 25-17, after a kill from Pledger and ace from Denny.
App State opened the third and final set with a 4-0 scoring run that featured kills from Leahy and Winterhoff as well as an ace from Roper. The Black and Gold later extended its lead to 17-7 with a 6-0 run that included kills and solo blocks from Pledger and Ambrose. Hardie, freshman Delanie Grevengoed, and Ambrose posted back-to-back kills as App State took a 21-13 lead. USC-Upstate fought back with a 5-0 run, but a solo block and kill from Grevengoed kept App State ahead, 23-18. A second kill from Hardie brought the Mountaineers to set and match point (24-19). App State took the set (25-19) and the match (3-0) after a Spartans error.
The Mountaineers will close out the Black & Gold Invitational with a 2 p.m. match against UNC Greensboro on Saturday.