BUENA VISTA, Va. The Southern Virginia Volleyball team kept to its winning ways as it swept Eastern Mennonite 3-0. The Knights won the match with scores of 25-19, 25-15 and 25-19. Ali Krebs helped lead the way with 20 assists while Brynn Hansen again led the Knights in kills with 8.
The effort by the team was a well rounded one in which several players contributed. SVU jumped to a 10-6 lead in game 1 and never looked back. The lead increased to 16-11 before the hosts distanced themselves by six for the game win.
"We had some tough early tourneys," said Head Coach Brian Pendleton. "We thought we were only playing average volleyball, but we actually were doing good, but the competition did not allow us to show our best. To get that first game against a 2-1 ODAC team means a lot. It shows our progress."
In the second game the Knights established a stranglehold on the game and put the match truly out of reach with the 25-15 win. Superb defensive play by Hansen, along with blocks by Rika Larsen created the difficulties for the Royals that they could not overcome. At 23-12 the Knights had the breathing room they needed to play confident and finish off the visitors in the final game. The newfound confidence has been apparent to the players.
"We played well tonight," said Senior Defensive Specialist Jessi Gibbons. "Our chemistry on the court is great. I think we struggled early on in the season, but we've worked hard to gel and our results speak for themselves. It feels great to win."
The third game was more of a fight for the Knights, as the Royals fought hard to get back in the match. EMU took a 9-7 lead and looked to make a game of the contest, but the Knights went on a 5-0 run to take back the lead, and they never looked back. The lead continually increased from there, and SVU eventually won the game as well as the match when they recorded the 25-19 victory. Blocking was the key to the third game according to Pendleton.
"We won that third game with blocking kills, and not the offensive kind," said Pendleton. "To get the 3-0 sweep against them is impressive. Hopefully this streak continues, and we get on a roll as we head to qualifying for the USCAA Tournament."
SVU now has a record of 8-11. They host West Virginia Tech Oct. 1 in a double-header matchup. Game times are set at 6:00 pm and 8:00 pm.