Volleydawgs pick up second straight 3-0 win
Friday, October 30, 2009
LEBANON, Tenn. – Cumberland University won back-to-back conference matches for the first time this season with a 3-0 win over Lyon College Friday night at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center.
After picking up a sweep of Martin Methodist on Wednesday, the Bulldogs (17-11, 6-7 TranSouth) sent the visiting Pipers (10-21, 4-6) back to Batesville, Ark., with the same fate.
Cumberland took control of the match early with a 25-17 win in the opening set. The Bulldogs jumped out to a quick lead after a ball handling error on Lyon and two service aces by Tracy Smallwood. The Portland, Tenn., native collected three aces on the night. CU took advantage of two more aces in the set, including one by Macon County High School product Brooke Bowers. The freshman added another ace in the second set and is now tied for the TranSouth Conference lead with 45 on the season.
The Volleydawgs attacked the visitors early and often in the second set as they cruised to a 25-14 victory. CU scored eight of the set’s first nine points and later used a 9-3 run to build an 11-point lead, which never got smaller than nine through the end of the set. Cumberland held the Pipers to a negative hitting percentage, forcing nine attack errors.
In the decisive set, the Bulldogs faced a tougher task as Lyon kept the pressure on, but CU held its own. Trailing 14-9 the Pipers scored three straight points to make it a two-point game before Cumberland answered with three points of its own. Twice more the two teams swapped three-point runs before the Bulldogs began to pull away.
Cumberland finished the match with nine team blocks, including five in the opening set. Kayla Arnold of Greenbrier, Tenn., led the way with four blocks, while fellow Greenbrier High School alum Samantha Bellar and Laura DeGear of Big Rapids, Mich., each had three. Arnold had five kills and finished with a .417 hitting percentage and her twin sister, Kaysi, paced the Volleydawgs with a dozen kills. Cookeville High School product Taylor Denney and 14 and 13 assists, respectively, while Jordan Pescatore of Birmingham, Ala. collected 16 digs.
CU concludes the regular season with a home match against Union University. Prior to the contest, which could play a role in seeding for the upcoming TranSouth Championships, three Bulldogs will be recognized as part of Senior Night. Union is currently fourth in the conference, a game and a half ahead of Cumberland.