LEBANON, Tenn. – Kaysi Arnold tallied 22 kills to lead Cumberland University to a pair of four-set victories on the opening day of the TranSouth/Mid-South Volleyball Classic at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center Friday.
CU picked up wins over the University of Rio Grande (25-17, 25-17, 15-25, 25-23) and the University of the Cumberlands (25-20, 25-22, 22-25, 25-13) to improve to 14-3. The TranSouth Conference won nine of the 12 matches, all of which pitted an opponent from each conference against the other.
In Cumberland’s nightcap the Bulldogs held UC to a .061 attack percentage, including .000 in the second set and a negative .111 in the clincher. CU recorded 49 kills and hit .254 in the match.
Kaysi Arnold was named the Music City Star of the Game after tying a season-high with 13 kills, while Angelyn Stanton set a career-best with 11. Taylor Denney assisted on 21 of the team’s kills and Meghan Gass added 13 more assists. Jaclyn Rodriguez had a team-high 11 digs. Laura DeGear was a part of five blocks, including two solo.
The score remained tight through most of the match with the teams combining for 24 ties and 11 lead changes, including eight ties in each of the first two sets.
In the second set, the last tie came at 21-21 before Cumberland took the lead for good, holding the advantage for the first time since 7-6. During the stretch that the Patriots were ahead on the scoreboard the Bulldogs fought to keep it tight, never letting UC gain more than a three-point lead.
After dropping the third set, Cumberland used a late push to close out the match in the fourth. With the score tied at 9-9, the Volleydawgs went on a 12-1 run to make it an 11-point game and cruising to the victory.
Cumberland 3, Rio Grande 1
Cumberland needed four sets to finish of Rio Grande in the Bulldogs’ first match of the day.
The Bulldogs opened with 25-17 wins in each of the first two sets before dropping the third set 25-15 and bouncing back with a 25-23 win in the fourth.
Jessica Gericke paced Cumberland with 10 kills on 17 attacks and one error to finish with a .529 hitting percentage. Kaysi Arnold added nine kills, while Laura DeGear tacked on seven more.
Taylor Denney and Meghan Gass each finished with 16 digs. From the service line, Samantha Bellar, Brooke Bowers, Gass and Denney each collected one ace.
Rio Grande nearly forced a fifth set, coming back from a 24-18 deficit in the fourth to make it a one-point game with a pair of kills, two blocks and a CU attack error. However, the Bulldogs benefited from a serve into the net that ended the match.
The Bulldogs will continue play in the TranSouth/Mid-South Classic Saturday with matchups against St. Catharine College at 11 a.m. and Shawnee State University at 5 p.m.