LYNCHBURG, Va. – The Randolph College volleyball team fell to host and Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) foe Lynchburg College in straight sets (25-22, 25-13, 26-24) on Friday evening in Turner Gymnasium.
The WildCats move to 8-18, 3-8 ODAC and just misses out on the eighth seed of the ODAC Tournament by way of a tiebreaker with Eastern Mennonite University. Randolph returns to the RAD Center tomorrow afternoon to close out its season against NC Wesleyan College at 1 p.m.
The opening set saw the Hornets grab an early 3-1 lead but the WildCats were able to make up the deficit off of a 3-1 run, leveling the score to 4-all. However, Lynchburg was quick to take back the advantage, pushing its lead all the way to 15-5. Randolph slowly chipped away at the point gap, roping the score to 16-11 and forcing the Hornets into a timeout. Coming out of the break, the Hornets continued to see their lead diminish until the WildCats finally evened the score at 20-all. After a brief intermission, Lynchburg pushed the score to match point off of a 4-0 run, though Randolph would manage to trim the score to 24-22 off of kills by Shelby Bergum (Terrebonne, Ore./Redmond) and Lauren Morgan (Bedford, Va./Liberty). Still, the Hornets would secure the 25-22 win on a final kill.
Despite Randolph holding a 5-4 edge in the second set, Lynchburg rattled off a 13-2 run for a comfortable 17-7 margin. The WildCats fought hard to catch up to the Hornets, eventually slicing the deficit to 24-13, but a Randolph ball handling error would give Lynchburg a 2-0 set advantage.
Similar to the first set, the third set saw both teams on equal footing early on before Randolph took a slight 7-6 edge thanks to a kill by Mackenzie Ambrose (Floyd, Va./Floyd County). The WildCats were able to extend their lead to 11-9 but a 4-0 run placed the Hornets out front with a 13-11 advantage. Although Lynchburg continued to hold on to the lead, the WildCats were never far behind and eventually sliced the deficit to 23-all before grabbing a 24-23 edge on a Taylor Webb (Nassawadox, Va./Northampton) service ace. However, after Lynchburg called a timeout to regroup, the Hornets delivered a 3-1 run to secure the third set and the match victory.
Autumn Troxell (Front Royal, Va./Warren County) paced the offensive efforts with seven kills while adding nine digs for the defense. Bergum added five kills for the WildCats while Webb, Ambrose, Morgan and Rebecca Lesnak (Blountville, Tenn./Sullivan Central) floored four kills apiece. Kennedy Webb (Nassawadox, Va./Northampton) collected 15 digs for the night with Taylor Webb adding 10 digs. Brooks Gillerlain (Suffolk, Va./Nansemond-Suffolk Academy) concluded the match with a double-double 21 assists and 10 digs.