WILMINGTON — The Wilmington College volleyball team opened the 2021 fall season with a four-set victory (25-19, 25-18, 23-25, 25-19) over the University of Northwestern Ohio before falling to Midway University in straight sets (25-15, 25-8, 25-18) at Fred Raizk Arena on Wednesday.
The victory in match one marked the first career win for head coach Sophie Windover.
“I was really proud of our team as everyone did their part to secure the win in game one,” said Windover. “It was great to see all of their hard work pay off with great execution against UNOH.”
In match one, the Fightin’ Quakers started off by winning 5-of-6 points off a service run from Victoria Long. The Racers battled back to within two points (21-19), but four straight points off the service of Andie Dolven that concluded by consecutive blocks from Joy Bebe gave the hosts the first set.
Set two was rather similar as the hosts built up an early lead and closed it out with a service run, this one from Macee Hamilton. The Racers, for the only set in the match, hit over a .100 clip at .256 to take set three 25-23. The Quakers returned to form in set four, however, holding the opposition to a .088 clip and winning the match.
“Sofia Thomas did a great job moving the ball around and Andie Dolven ran the court well,” Windover said. “Blake O’Brien kept our defense and back row poised and controlled throughout the match.”
Thomas led everyone with 18 kills and the Quakers with a .378 attack percentage. Dolven dished out 33 assists while O’Brien and Sydney Geibel both had double digits in digs. Bebe finished with six kills and six blocks.
In match two, Wilmington struggled in serve receive in the first set, and Midway, after winning the first set, hit a .500 clip in the second with just a single attach error and held the hosts to a negative attack percentage in the second. Trailing two sets to none, the Quakers rallied from a 10-3 deficit in the final set to get within three points (12-9) on a service run from Skylar Carmichael. That would be as close as Wilmington would get, however, as the Eagles pulled away to win the match in straight sets.
Aubry Koster led Midway with 11 kills and a .917 attack percentage while Evelyn Milburn and Valerie Ramos combined for 30 assists. Thomas and Long both had five kills for Wilmington while Dolven dished out 17 assists.
The Quakers (1-1) have the weekend off before hosting Defiance College on Monday evening.