Volleyball Edges Liberty in Five Games
Aug. 31, 2007
RICHMOND, Va. - The Liberty Flames seemed to have the Maryland Terrapins' volleyball team on the ropes, but it was the Terps who caught fire to post a come-from-behind victory (30-21, 21-30, 27-30, 30-21, 15-7) in the opening night of the VCU/Third Degree Sportswear Invitational Friday evening at the Alltel Pavilion at the Stuart C. Siegel Center.
Trailing two games to one, the Terps (3-1) fell behind 16-15 in the fourth stanza before embarking on a 15-5 run to tie things at two apiece. The Flames (2-2) made nine errors down the stretch of game four.
With defeat temporarily avoided, the Terps built a working margin early in the fifth game, jumping out to an 8-2 lead en route to a match-clinching 15-7 victory.
Playing in their home state, Maryland's Vienna, Va. duo of sophomore Katie Usher and junior Mary Beth Brown came up big for the Terps. Usher led all players with 18 kills, hitting at an impressive .739 clip while Brown did a little of everything, registering 15 kills, six blocks, eight digs and two assists.
Maryland dominated most statistical categories, out-hitting the Flames .236-.051 and notching 22 more kills (68-46). However, the Terps kept the Flames close with some costly mistakes. Maryland committed 29 attack errors, 12 service errors, nine reception errors and nine ball-handling errors.
The Terps were without the services of junior setter Tedi Doucet (Austin, Texas), forcing Maryland head coach Janice Kruger to start freshman Rachel Profit at the position. Profit registered 22 assists, but moved back to her usual libero spot after two games while sophomore Hayley Hanson (Huntington Beach, Calif.) stepped in and recorded a match-high 38 assists.
Senior Beth Gillming (Cincinnati, Ohio) and junior Maggie Schmelzle (Cincinnati, Ohio) both reached double-digits in kills with 13 and 11 respectively. Gillming added a team-high 19 digs with Schmelzle close behind with 16. Freshman libero Bethany Springer had 12 digs.
Freshman Brittney Grove, who grew up right up the road from Richmond in Glen Allen, Va. was inserted into the lineup in the fourth game and played a key role in the win with three blocks - one solo and two assists.
Karyl Bacon and Nicki Scripko paced the Flames with nine kills apiece while Chelaine McCarty, Ashley Webber and Jessica Nelson each had eight.
Maryland plays a pair of games Saturday, beginning with the South Carolina Gamecocks at 11:30 a.m. and the host Virginia Commonwealth Rams at 7 p.m.