WACO, Texas – Four College of Charleston hitters combined for 62 of the team’s 71 kills to stun Virginia in a five-set thriller, 19-25, 22-25, 25-22, 29-27, 15-8, to close out the Baylor Classic at the Ferrell Center.
Sophomore outside hitter Devon Rachel (Lexington, Ky.) recorded her second double-double of the season with 18 kills and 14 digs versus the Cavaliers (3-9). Senior middle blocker Maddie Hills (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) also made a season-high 18 kills hitting a team best .429 in the match.
Junior outside hitter Riana Brennan (Los Gatos, Calif.) also turned in a double-double performance with 16 kills and 13 digs, while sophomore middle blocker Kennedy Madison (Evansville, Ind.) had 10 kills including the play that led to the match point sealed by Hills off the assist from sophomore setter Allison Beckman (Apex, N.C.).
“I am really proud of how the team responded after a slow start the first two sets against UVA,” CofC Head Coach Jason Kepner said. “All season, we have been getting close and putting ourselves in a position to be successful, but haven’t been able to finish the job. Tonight, we were able to win the close games and finish a match.”
Defensively, the Cougars (7-5) made 16 blocks including five by freshman Peyton Eisnaugle (Dallas, Texas), while UVa hit .190 for the match.
CofC rebounded from an earlier setback to host Baylor, 25-23, 25-21, 25-17, as Kennedy Madison recorded a team-high 12 kills and two blocks in the 3-0 loss.
The Cougars hit an improved .168 for the match behind Madison’s performance at the net (.296) and freshman Lauren Freed (Troy, Ohio) who made 11 kills. Peyton Eisnaugle made a return to her home state with five kills on six attempts against the Bears (9-4), while Maddie Hills had five kills on 12 attempts.
“This was a really challenging weekend,” said Kepner on facing three-straight Power 5 Conference schools in Washington State, Baylor and Virginia. “We grew as a team this weekend, especially tonight (against Virginia). This tournament will help us prepare for the start of CAA play next weekend.”
Charleston will begin conference play hosting Hofstra on Friday, Sept. 23 at 7 p.m. (ET) at TD Arena and Northeastern on Sunday, Sept. 25 at 1 p.m. (ET) at TD Arena. All matches are free admission to the public.
2016 Baylor Classic All-Tournament Team Best Blocker: Claire Martin, Washington State Best Libero: McKala Rhodes, College of Charleston Best Attacker: Kyra Holt, Washington State Best Setter: Morgan Reed, Baylor MVP: Katie Staiger, Baylor