CULLOWHEE, N.C. - Charleston Southern was unable to hold off a strong Western Carolina push in sets two and three as the Buccaneers fell to the host Catamounts in the first match of the Catamount Volleyball Classic on Friday night at the Ramsey Center.
The Bucs fall to 0-1 following the first match of the season, while Western Carolina takes their first win following the sweep.
Both sides battled throughout the first set with CSU building an early 5-3 lead behind Hannah Western's first kill of the evening. The Catamounts rallied back with four consecutive points to take the set lead as the two teams began a trait that would continue throughout the frame. The two sides tied the set seven times and battled through three lead changes with Western Carolina taking control of the frame late with a 4-0 run on Emma Tynan's serve to take a 20-17 lead. The Catamounts took the frame, 25-22, following an Aleah Keaton kill.
CSU took a 16-12 lead midway through the second set, but the Bucs were unable to keep the momentum going in the frame as the Catamounts rallied late to take the 2-0 lead. CSU took advantage of Addison Kaderli and Kylie Klein's four kills apiece in the frame to build the four-point advantage and CSU went up 21-17 late following Rachel Smith's lone service ace in the match. The Catamounts furiously rallied back to take the frame on an 8-1 run sparked by a trio of Abigail Veit kills to head into the break following the 25-22 win.
Western Carolina closed out the win in the third set to complete the sweep. The Catamounts recorded the first six points out of the break and went up 21-9 following back-to-back CSU kills on their way to taking the 25-12 set win.
Inside the Numbers:
- Addison Kaderli led the CSU attack on the night with a team-high 10 kills, to go with six digs and a block assist.
- Hannah Western added nine kills and a .200 hitting percentage to go with four digs.
- Rachel Smith set up the offense and completed her first double-double of the season with 30 assists and 11 digs.
- Madison Martin had a match-high 20 digs, 10 coming in the second set, to pace all defensive efforts in the game.
- Skylar Blackmon finished the contest with eight digs in her first collegiate match with the Bucs.
News & Notes
- Western Carolina now holds the 13-2 advantage in the all-time meetings between Charleston Southern and the Catamounts.
- CSU falls to 0-4 in Cullowhee, N.C. over the past two seasons after dropping all three matches in the 2016 Catamount Volleyball Classic last season.
- CSU, the 2016 NCAA leader in team digs, got off to a strong start in the 2017 season as the Buccaneers recorded 57 digs over the three sets on Friday night.
- Martin's 20 digs moved her closer to 1,000 career digs as the junior libero is striving to become just the 10th player in program history to reach the mark.
- Martin has reached at least 20 digs for the 18th time in her career.
- Smith's double-double was the 16th of her career.
- Kaderli reached double-digit kills for the 36th time in her career and moved her within one of jumping into the top 20 all-time behind Amberle Trinder (667, 2007-10).
Charleston Southern continues the Catamount Volleyball Classic tomorrow morning as the Buccaneers take on Jacksonville State in the breakfast match at the Ramsey Center at 10 a.m. CSU closes out the weekend with a 4 p.m. matchup against Towson.