RALEIGH, N.C. – The Salem volleyball team earned a split against USA South Conference foes William Peace and Mary Baldwin in a tri-match hosted by the Pacers in Raleigh, N.C. on Saturday, Oct. 19. The Spirits began the day with a 25-18, 25-16, 25-23 win over Mary Baldwin and capped off the session with a 25-22, 25-16, 25-9 setback to William Peace in the evening.
MATCH 1: SALEM 3, MARY BALDWIN 0
The Spirits picked up their 11th win of the season with a three-set victory over Mary Baldwin, led by the trio of Madelyn Chappell (10 kills), Kathryn O'Connell (eight) and Valeria Rosa Lopez (eight). Salem combined for 42 kills and a .210 attack percentage, while limiting the Fighting Squirrels to 29 kills and a .118 attack percentage.
Defensively, the Spirits were led by the combination of Taylor Moulton (13 digs), O'Connell (10 digs / four assisted blocks) and Rosa Lopez, who closed with 10 digs. Teammate Hannah Delcamp also came through with a solid outing, which included 26 assists and five digs.
Salem broke an eight-all deadlock by taking advantage of three unforced errors and a Moulton kill, opening up a four-point advantage midway through the first set. Timely kills by Delcamp, Brooklyn Snow and Chappell allowed Salem to stretch its lead to 20-13. Mary Baldwin rallied with four straight points, trimming the lead to three, but the combination of Rosa Lopez in serve and kills from Moulton allowed the Spirits to earn the seven-point victory.
With its offense clicking on all cylinders, Salem established a 10-5 lead in the second set behind the service games of Tricia Brown, Alexis Sunderland and Rosa Lopez. Four kills in a 15-point stretch, including three from Rosa Lopez, extended the Spirits' advantage to 19-10. Brianna Cherry and O'Connell added kills of their own, while Salem capitalized on a pair of unforced errors, to help secure the nine-point win.
The Spirits streaked out to a 10-6 lead early in the third, behind two kills by Brown, but Mary Baldwin answered with a 6-2 run of its own to draw even at 12. After two ties in the next eight points, including a 16-all deadlock, Salem broke through with a series of slams by Lauren Lindsay and O'Connell. The trio of Chappell, Rosa Lopez and Cherry contributed kills down the stretch as the Spirits completed their fifth sweep of the season.
MATCH 2: WILLIAM PEACE 3, SALEM 0
Madelyn Chappell was again the primary source of offense for Salem (11-9, 7-4 USA South), finishing with nine kills and a .231 attack percentage, while Kathryn O'Connell and Brooklyn Snow added seven kills each in a setback to William Peace (17-7, 7-4 USA South) in the third clash between the two programs this season.
O'Connell was among the defensive leaders with 10 digs, while Hannah Delcamp topped double figures with 25 assists. Teammates Taylor Moulton and Valeria Rosa Lopez added eight digs, while Corrin Shores and Alexis Sunderland contributed six digs.
Lauren Lindsay drove a kill past the William Peace defense and Delcamp added three points in serve, which included kills by Brooklyn Snow and Moulton, to give Salem a 13-9 lead at the midway point of the opening set. The Pacers fought back to draw event at 14, forcing the first of four ties, as the game reached a climatic 18-all deadlock. Paige Emore and Mya Parks recorded two kills each over the final 11 points, countering slams by O'Connell, Moulton and Snow, to help William Peace earn the three-point win.
The battle waged on into the early stages of the second set as the two teams endured four ties in the first 14 points, resulting in a seven-all deadlock. A kill by Emore put teammate Abby Benton in serve as William Peace scored 13 unanswered points and grabbed a 20-7 lead. Three kills from O'Connell, along with two from Moulton, sparked a Salem rally, but the Spirits would pull no closer than eight points as William Peace earned the 25-16 win.
With its offense clicking on all cylinders, William Peace opened up a 10-3 lead in the third set behind the play of Parks and Sara Scott. O'Connell and Chappell contributed kills for the Spirits, but Benton took over in serve and stretched the William Peace lead to 19-6. Salem picked up kills from O'Connell, Snow and Tricia Brown down the stretch, but the Pacers completed the sweep with the 16-point triumph.
Salem returns to Varsity Gym on Tuesday, Oct. 22, for a 7 p.m. clash with Averett. The match will feature a S(Mac)down contest where members of the campus community and fans are encouraged to bring their special macaroni and cheese recipes for prizes awarded based on fan voting.