DAYTON, Tenn. — After a disappointing start to the final day of the Bryan Bash with a 3-0 loss to Southeastern (Fla.), the University of Pikeville volleyball team bounced back with a 3-1 win over the host Lyons on Saturday night, Aug. 26.
UPIKE (2-3) could never get going against Southeastern, hitting just .076 as a team en route to losing by set scores of 25-21, 25-8 and 25-20. It looked like another slow start against Bryan after a 25-20 first-set loss, but the Bears rallied to take three straight sets for a 25-20, 25-17 and 25-17 win.
Southeastern 3, UPIKE 0
Southeastern (8-2) fell behind 6-0 in the first set, but went on to tie the match at 17 and went on to score eight of the next 12 points to steal the win. Although Southeastern would win the second set easily, the Bears were still around in the third set with a 21-19 deficit before a late 4-1 run sank them.
Kiana Sawtelle was a force for SU, registering 16 kills on just 26 swings for a .423 percentage, helping her team to a .250 hitting mark overall.
UPIKE struggled for kills, ending up with Savanna Zakman’s six leading the way, followed by Noelani Simpson with five. Zakman also dished out just eight assists. The lone bright spot in the Pikeville lineup was Amari Eadie with seven blocks.
UPIKE 3, Bryan 1
After three straight losses at the Bryan Bash, the Bears were ready to right the ship and did so in style by taking three straight sets from the host.
Cassidy Tackett shined with a match-best 13 kills and Simpson chipped in with 10. While head coach Obed Quiles will want a better mark than .127 going forward for his hitters, it was more than enough to get past the .066 showing by Bryan.
Credit Eadie with forcing the opponent into such a low mark as she kept up her pace at the net with seven blocks, giving her 14 on the day. Zakman, who handed out a match-high 26 assists, was part of the stellar defense as well with a match-high 17 digs.
UPIKE gave the first set away after blowing a 9-2 lead. It was still in front at 20-19, but Bryan escaped with a 6-0 run.
The frustration must have helped the Bears though as they cruised in the final three sets, leading by as many as six points in the second set, eight in the third set and 12 in the final frame at 21-9.