By Daniel Whitehead
DANVILLE, Va.—A strong third set by the Southern Virginia University women's volleyball team was not enough to overcome host Averett University as the Knights fell in four sets, 12-25, 20-25, 30-28, 16-25 Tuesday night in Danville, Va.
Averett (5-4) defeated Southern Virginia (1-4) with dominant play in the opening two sets, achieving 16 kills in each period and tallying respective attack totals of 40 and 42.
"I thought our effort was there and the girls were playing to the best of their ability," said Southern Virginia head coach Paige Hiatt. "We need to work on our attack approaches and spacing, but we showed signs of improvement since the W&L tournament last weekend."
Senior Tori Tuttle led the way for the Knights with 10 kills with only five errors on 30 total attacks. Sophomore Shannon Romito earned nine kills, while freshman McKenzie Weaver had eight kills on 25 attempts.
Outside hitter Shyanne Ison led the team with 39 total attacks, with Tuttle providing 30 and Romito 27. Sophomore Katelynn Tlustek was credited with 32 assists for the night, while freshmen Claire Houghtaling and April Bennett each registered one service ace.
Southern Virginia earned 19 kills in the third period to the Cougars' 17 en route to the third-set victory with both teams garnering 49 total attacks for the period.
Defensively, Tuttle and Weaver combined for seven block assists with Kaitlyn Eaton and Romito each achieving one block assist.
The Cougars' Allison Sparks had 18 kills for Averett with Leslie Fulton and Sarah Sparks each contributing nine. Nicole Barringer tallied 45 assists to aid the Averett offense.
Southern Virginia next competes Thursday night at Mary Baldwin with a scheduled start time of 7 p.m. in Staunton, Va.