JOHNSON CITY, TENN. (Sept. 24, 2004) - The Lady Bucs volleyball team opened their home season tonight at Brooks Gymnasium falling to the Appalachian State Mountaineers 2-3 (30-20, 33-31, 22-30, 17-30, 8-15). With the loss, ETSU falls to 1-10, 0-1 SoCon for the season while the Mountaineers improve to 8-5, 1-0 in SoCon play.
ETSU started strong with a 30-20 win in game one hitting .444 compared to the .139 of the Mountaineers. The Lady Bucs took the lead at the 7-6 mark and never let ASU back into the match offensively. Behind six kills from Sara Scandiffio (Purcellville, VA) and four kills from both Andrea Piercy (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) and Callie Kiselich (Colorado Springs, Co.), the Lady Bucs dominated at the net both offensively and defensively during the first set.
The second game started much the same as ETSU took the commanding lead. Both teams posted poor hitting percentages as the Lady Bucs managed to hit just .263 compared to the .241 of ASU. ETSU setter Brittany Kessel (Libertyville, Ill.) scored four straight points to give ETSU an 11-9 lead; however the Mountaineers managed to even the game at 25-25. The Lady Bucs continued to battle behind the play of Karen Freeburg (New Castle, Ind.) who lead ETSU to two crucial points to again even the match at 29-29, where the Lady Bucs were able to take that momentum and close the game with the 33-31 win. Leading the way for the Bucs in game two was Kiselich posting six kills while Kessel tallied 14 assists and five digs for the game.
Game three was the turning point for Appalachian State as they game back from the intermission on fire. Taking a quick 7-3 lead behind the service of Rachel Gates, ASU dominated the third game from both sides of the net. ETSU hit just .200 with five service errors in the game, while the Mountaineers quickly rebounded with a .308 hitting percentage to take the win in game three 30-22. Game four proved much the same as ETSU never found their offensive rhythm. The Lady Bucs posted their lowest hitting percentage of the night hitting just .068, while ASU dominated the defensive side of the net managing 3.0 total blocks compared to zero blocks posted by the Lady Bucs.
"Our team played a great first two games tonight. We battled for every point and worked very well together. Our confidence will continue to grow through the conference season, we need to learn how to close out the final games of the match and we will see more positive results," Lady Bucs head coach Lindsey Devine said.
With the match evened at two games a piece ETSU came out in game five looking for a much needed win. The 15 point win total wasn't enough for the Bucs as ASU took the final game of the match 15-8. ETSU was lead on the night by Kiselich with 19 kills, while Jen Sartor (Toronto, Canada) and Scandiffio posted 16 and 14 kills respectively for the match.
The Lady Bucs return to action tomorrow versus Western Carolina for the finale of Volleyball Alumni Weekend. Game time is set for 2:00 p.m. with an alumni match scheduled for 10 a.m. Both games will take place in Brooks Gym.