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WildCats Drop Two in Final Day at Cougar Classic

Brooks Gillerain was named to the Cougar Classic All-Tournament Team
Brooks Gillerain was named to the Cougar Classic All-Tournament Team

DANVILLE, Va. – The Randolph College volleyball team closed out day two of the Cougar Classic with a 3-1 (30-28, 15-25, 21-25, 21-25) loss to Roanoke College before falling 3-1 to William Peace College on Saturday afternoon.

Game 1: Roanoke 3, Randolph 1

Randolph opened up a 5-1 advantage in the start of the first frame but the Maroons would soon level the score shortly after and both teams began to fight for the lead. Roanoke managed to push ahead of the WildCats, 12-11, and proceeded to increase the gap off of a 6-0 run.

Randolph responded with a 7-1 spurt to trim the deficit to 21-19. The WildCats continued to chip away at Roanoke's lead, eventually capitalizing on three Maroon attack errors to make it a 23-all game and force Roanoke into a timeout. A back-and-forth battle ensued for the win with the WildCats claiming the victory off of a block assist by Shelby Bergum (Terrebonne, Ore./Redmond) and Olivia Pullin (Roanoke, Va./Patrick Henry).

Roanoke dominated the second set as errors committed by the WildCats handed them an 8-0 lead but a 7-1 run would bring Randolph within two points of their conference foe. The WildCats remained on the Maroons' tail but were soon plagued by errors which enabled Roanoke to push ahead for a 24-14 advantage. Randolph would secure one last point before the Maroons capitalized on a WildCat attack error to clinch set two.

Set three started out with a close score before Lauren Morgan (Bedford, Va./Liberty) and Rebecca Lesnak (Blountville, Tenn./Sullivan Central) floored two kills each to bring the WildCats' lead to 9-5. Roanoke trailed by no more than three points until the Maroons rattled off five consecutive points to take hold of the lead and force Randolph to call a timeout. Coming out of the break, Randolph continued to trail behind the Maroons but could not find an opportunity to run ahead as Roanoke took the third set.

Although the WildCats held a 3-1 lead in the final stanza, Roanoke made quick work of overtaking Randolph by a margin of 17-7. The Maroons remained ahead by more than 10 points until a 6-0 run brought the WildCats to within five (19-14). The Maroons still managed to keep Randolph at bay throughout the rest of the set, ultimately clinching the set and match victory.

Autumn Troxell (Front Royal, Va./Warren County) posted a double-double of 15 kills and 16 digs for the WildCats while Lesnak added seven kills and Morgan chipped in six. Brooks Gillerlain (Suffolk, Va./Nansemond-Suffolk Academy) also notched a double-double with 27 assists and 16 digs while Kennedy Webb (Nassawadox, Va./Northampton) recorded a career-high 23 digs.

Game 2: William Peace 3, Randolph 1

The WildCats fell to William Peace College in four sets (25-20, 24-26, 21-25, 20-25). Three Randolph student-athletes notched double-double stats in the match with Troxell landing 18 kills and 10 digs while Lesnak totaled 10 kills and 11 digs and Gillerlain dished out 24 assists and 11 digs. Webb concluded the match with a team-high 12 digs. 

Gillerlain was the lone WildCat to be named to the All-Tournament team.

Randolph concludes the weekend 0-4 and will look for its first win when the team travels to Mary Baldwin College on Tuesday, Sept. 5 for a 7 p.m. match.