Volleyball Edged by Auburn, 3-1
Hill Slams Season-High 21 Kills
Sept. 5, 2009
MINNEAPOLIS, MN -- The GW Volleyball team suffered its third straight loss of the season Saturday night to Auburn in the Diet Coke Classic at the University of Minnesota's Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis. The Tigers prevailed, 3-1, by the scores, 25-22, 25-21, 21-25, 25-22 in a tight one-hour, 52-minute battle.
For the second straight match, GW junior Leah Hill led the Colonials in kills with a match-high 21 and 18 digs for her third double-double of the season and a team-high 22 points. Freshman OH Lauren Whyte was the only other Colonial in double-figure kills with 14 for 14.5 points. As a team, the Colonials dug the ball exceptionally well led by freshman libero Candace Silva-Martin's 22 digs. Alyssa Valentine also recorded 20 digs and Katie Butz contributed 11 digs as GW out-dug the Tigers, 90-77.
Auburn (5-2) hit .237 for the match while George Washington was held to a .166 hitting percentage. Auburn's Morgan Johns led the Tigers in kills with 14 while teammate Liz Crouch added a team-high 22 digs. Alyssa Davis hit an errorless .600 on nine kills in 15 swings.
The first set was the closest of the match and saw 12 ties, the last at 20-20 before the Tigers got a pair of kills from Johns and benefitted from a pair of GW attack errors to win the set, 25-22. In the second set, the Colonials rallied from a 22-16 deficit to get within two at 23-21 on a kill by Butz before Kelly Fidero smashed a kill for set point. Again the Tigers won the set on a GW attack error for the 25-21 victory. The Colonials took control early in the third set and pulled away from a 5-5 tie with a 6-1 spurt behind kills from Whyte, Syverson and Butz for an 11-6 advantage. Auburn eventually closed to within two at 20-18 before GW scored five of the last eight points for the 25-21 triumph. It proved to be the only set GW would win in the tournament.
Auburn jumped out to a 10-4 lead to begin the fourth set but GW rallied to knot the set at 14-14 on a service ace by Silva-Martin. The Tigers reclaimed the lead at 16-15 on a kill by Katherine Culwell and never reliquished it en route to the 25-22 victory.
The Colonials fell to 0-3 in the all-time series with the Tigers in the teams' first meeting in 20 years.
GW (3-3) next plays Friday, Sept. 11 in the Villanova Invitational against Princeton in a 5:00 p.m. contest. The Colonials also will face UMBC and Villanova on Saturday at Villanova.