DANVILLE, Va. – The Emory & Henry College Volleyball Team (4-1) capped off their opening weekend stretch with a pair of wins Sunday at Averett University's Cougar Invitational. The Wasps defeated the Pride of Greensboro College 3-0 (25-22, 25-23, 25-16) to start the day and came away with a 3-2 (26-28, 25-20, 25-27, 25-19, 15-10) victory over the William Peace University Pacers in their final match of the tournament.
Emory & Henry 3, Greensboro 0
The Wasps and Pride battled back and forth in the first set with neither team leading by more than four points at any given time. Down 19-17, E&H scored three straight points and put the pressure on Greensboro, going on to win by a 25-22 score.
In the second frame, Emory & Henry found itself down 22-14, but fought back, scoring 11 of the final 12 points of the set to take a 2-0 lead in the match. The Wasps kept the momentum going in the third set as they went on a five-point run early and an eight-point scoring spurt to go up 23-13. After a pair of points by GC, E&H was able to side out and put the match away.
Emory & Henry was led by freshman outside hitter Hannah Stewart (Boone, N.C.) as she tallied 15 kills and 13 digs for her first collegiate double-double and added four service aces. Senior outside hitter Jamie Cockerham (Galax, Va.) had 11 kills while sophomore setter Maleah Neely (Hillsville, Va.) dished out 36 assists and junior libero Kelly Mae Kerlin (Franklin, Tenn.) notched 17 digs. As a team, the Wasps hit .237 (43-15-118) for the match compared to just .143 (34-18-112) for the Pride.
Liz Widenhouse had 18 kills to lead Greensboro offensively while Cortland Phillips registered 26 assists and Danielle Simpson and Olivia Gough tallied 18 and 14 digs, respectively.
Emory & Henry 3, William Peace 2
The Wasps got out to a 5-0 lead in the first set against the Pacers but couldn't get full control of the contest as William Peace crept its way back in and final tied the contest at 22 points apiece. The score would be tied again at 23, 24, 25 and 26 before WPU pushed out two points to win the frame.
Emory & Henry used a .310 (14-5-29) hitting effort in the second set to knot the match at one. Cockerham had four kills in the last seven points of the stanza for the Wasps.
William Peace went up 2-1 after the third set, but E&H made the Pacers push past the normal 25-point scoring threshold to get the victory. The Wasps found themselves up 23-20 late but E&H errors and WPU execution gave the frame to the Pacers.
In the fourth set, E&H went on a six-point scoring run early as they hit 14-4-27 (.370) compared to just four kills with six errors by William Peace. Cockerham had another six kills in the period to lead the Wasps' offense. The deciding set went back and forth to start but after the changeover, Emory & Henry had a pair of three-point scoring runs to take an advantage it would not relinquish en route to the win.
Cockerham led all players with a career-high 26 kills as she completed the double-double with 10 digs. Stewart had her second double-double of the day with 10 kills and 13 digs while Neely tallied a career-high 49 assists and added 11 digs.
WPU was paced by Lauren Naugle's 19 kills, Brooke Norris' 32 assists and Maddie Irvin's 29 digs. Crystal Alston added nine kills and 12 digs as well.
Emory & Henry will next compete on Friday, September 7 at Hollins University's tournament. The Wasps will face Virginia Intermont College at 1:00 p.m., and take on Gettysburg College at 5:00 p.m.