It was 161 days later than originally anticipated, but the APSU volleyball team managed to kick off their spring season with back-to-back sweeps of Tennessee Tech.
The Governors lost their lone match to TTU last season, but won all six of this year’s sets to begin a perfect 2-0. Both games on the weekend were heavily contested between the two teams, but it was the Govs’ ability to maintain composure late that sealed the sweep.
APSU bested the Golden Eagles on Sunday, Feb. 7 by final scores of 25-21, 25-22 and 25-20. While Monday’s match continued to give APSU close sets, they were able to win all three 25-18, 25-23 and 25-22.
Preseason All-OVC nominee Brooke Moore played well in both contests, combining for 24 kills and 25 digs on the weekend. The senior acknowledged the difficulties of having to wait until 2021 to face conference opposition, but said that the process of acquainting with her team made it worth the wait.
“I think getting each person in and getting everyone comfortable around each other is a big change, but that is a positive that we had in the fall, is getting to play against each other, practice against each other and with everyone right next to each other,” Moore said. “So that was a good adjustment this year.”
The two teams consistently answered one another in the first set on Feb. 8, splitting the first 12 points of the match. APSU would score 10 of the next 11 points in the match to take the first point.
Tennessee Tech battled in the second, tying the round at 23 despite finding themselves behind 10-3 to start. A kill from Moore and an error from Golden Eagles’ freshman Dallas Oatis gave the Govs back-to-back points to clinch the middle match.
TTU earned their first lead of the afternoon in the third by scoring the first two points. Their fast start would be short lived, however, as Tennessee Tech allowed eight points via errors to give the Governors the sweep.
Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the Ohio Valley Conference decided to limit the size of their annual conference tournament from eight teams to four. With a 16-game, conference only slate to play, APSU head coach Taylor Mott emphasized the importance of every point as the regular season progresses.
“With everyone not getting a chance to play everybody, it’s going to be difficult, in my opinion, to see who the best four teams are,” she said. “I think that’s the mindset we had coming in. Every point is going to matter. You can’t afford to win matches in five [sets]. We have to take care of business as early as we can, because every point is going to matter.”
The Govs take their undefeated record into Nashville, Tenn. next weekend when battling against Tennessee State.