For the third straight year, Lady Govs volleyball opened their season with a loss.
APSU Lady Govs volleyball lost in three sets (25-17, 25-16, 25-23) to the Ohio University Lady Bobcats for their season opener.
Under head coach Taylor Mott the Lady Govs are 1-3 in season openers.
During the first set, senior Aubrey Marsellis set the tone early for the match when she whipped up an ace on the opening point. The momentum then shifted to Ohio as they rallied and responded with a 6-1 run.
After calling a timeout in hopes of icing Ohio’s momentum, the Lady Bobcats picked up tremendous steam and took a 15-4 lead.
APSU rallied back, but eventually lost to the Lady Bobcats 25-17.
In the second set, sophomore Ashley Slay marked her presence when the Lady Bobcats looked to run away in an 8-3 lead early in the second set. The Lady Govs then bumped, set and killed their way to an 11-10 lead. Ohio rallied and ran with it to make it a score of 16-12. The Lady Govs, with the help of senior Sammie Ebright, came within one point at 16-15. Ebright posted a kill and a defensive prowess to quell the Ohio attack.
However, this would be as close as the Lady Govs came to victory. Ohio went on a 7-0 run and finished the set at 25-16.
The final set was as tumultuous as the second. Ohio raced to an early 6-2 lead, but the Lady Govs fought back and took a 16-15 lead, thanks to freshman outside hitter Haylee Tafts.
The Lady Bobcats were able to rally and take back the lead, forcing APSU to take a timeout. Ebright and Slay teamed up for a solid defense and started a 3-0 run. Ohio held off the Lady Govs and finished the set with a kill to end it at 25-23.
APSU finished with 30 kills over three sets, posting a mild .032 attack percentage. Slay led the team with seven kills. Ebright, senior hitter Samantha Strother and freshman hitter Cecily Gable each provided production with six kills. Ohio dominated with 39 kills in the victory, but a strong defensive stand by APSU held them to a .190 attack percentage.
The Lady Govs faced the Boilermakers of the University of Purdue, who received early recognition from the American Volleyball Coaches Association. The Lady Govs lost a hard fought battle in a three-set decision to Purdue Friday, Aug. 28.
Mott used three freshman in the opener. Despite the combo of Strother and Ebright, the Lady Govs dropped the three-set match (25-10, 25-22, 25-19). The Lady Govs trailed most of the set, but the standout effort by Ebright with six kills and one attack error in 13 attempts led the way with a .385 attack percentage and kept the final two sets close.
The Boilermakers opened with a blistering 13-2 run, ending the first set in easy fashion with a 25-10 win.
Strother collected a team-leading overall eight kills, five in the second set. The Lady Govs battled throughout the second set only to fall 25-23.
During the final set, the Boilermakers went on a 6-2 run, never relinquishing the lead. The Lady Govs were able to get within two points of Purdue twice within the set, however they still fell short 25-19.
Though disappointed with the result, Mott said she was pleased with the composure and standout defensive effort by Ebright.
“Ebright stepped up offensively and defensively in the match,” Mott said. “We struggled again with our serve receive, but battled in the second and third sets. We kept three freshmen on the court and I was impressed as they kept their composure,” Mott said, according to letsgopeay.com.