Mountain Hawks fall to Delaware in opener at UVa Tournament
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Lehigh volleyball team suffered its first loss of the season Friday dropping a 3-1 decision to Delaware in the opening match of the Holiday Inn Jefferson Cup at Memorial Gymnasium. All four sets were tightly contested, but the Blue Hens prevailed 25-21, 21-25, 25-22, 25-21 for their first win of the season, while dropping the Mountain Hawks to 1-1.
A balanced Lehigh attack saw five players record at least six kills in the match. Junior Courtney McCutchan and sophomore Kaylynn Genemaras led the Mountain Hawks with nine kills apiece. Freshman Amy Matula recorded a double-double with 18 assists and 17 digs, while junior libero Rachel Charles recorded a team-high 20 digs.
The Mountain Hawks hit .137 for the match, but were done in by a negative hitting percentage in the fourth set.
Lehigh started strong in the first set, building a five-point lead at 12-7 on a Charles service ace, but Delaware battled back, keyed by a six-point run to eventually take a 22-19 lead before holding off the Mountain Hawks 25-21.
The second set saw a reversal of fortune in Lehigh’s favor as the Mountain Hawks fell behind by five points early, before clawing back to take an 18-17 lead on back-to-back aces by senior Taylor Poole, who led Lehigh with three in the match. A kill by junior Paige Kruse extended Lehigh’s lead to four points at 24-20 and two points later freshman Ana Vhrel registered the set-winning kill.
Both teams attacked the ball well in the third set, with Lehigh having its best set of the match with a .257 percentage, but Delaware posted an impressive .281 attack percentage en route to a three-point victory. The Mountain Hawks actually led throughout most of the set, but with Lehigh leading 21-20, the Blue Hens reeled off five of the final six points in the match to take a 2-1 lead.
Lehigh also led early in the fourth set, but only managed nine kills while committing ten errors. Delaware went on a 14-4 spurt midway through the set to take the lead for good and clinched the match with a Chelsea Lawrence kill. Katie Hillman paced the Blue Hens with 16 kills, while Alissa Alker added 11 kills and 16 digs. Delaware finished the match with a .189 hitting percentage.
The Mountain Hawks will wrap-up action at the Holiday Inn Jefferson Cup with two more matches on Saturday. Lehigh will meet host Virginia at 1 p.m. before wrapping-up tournament play against Western Kentucky at 5 p.m.