College Volleyball Final – Guilford 3, Ferrum 1

GREENSBORO, N.C. (10-30-08) – Guilford College needed four match points in the fourth set, but prevailed 30-28, to pull out a 3-1 nonconference volleyball victory over visiting Ferrum College Thursday night. The Quakers ended an eight-match losing skid with a 25-21, 25-23, 17-25, 30-28 victory.

Guilford (6-22) pulled out a pair of close wins in the first two sets, which featured 13 ties and seven lead changes between them. Five of Anna Miller’s team-high 12 kills and four of Bethany Hawks’ team season-high six aces came in the first two sets. Ferrum’s Jessica Flanagan’s had six of her match-high 17 kills in the second frame, which helped the Panthers (8-22) rally from a pair of four-point deficits. Ferrum took a 19-18 lead on a Flanagan kill, but the Quakers used five Ferrum attack errors and a ball-handling error on match point to take a 2-0 lead.

Tiffany Walker had five of her 12 kills and Lauren Thurman served up four of her six aces in Ferrum’s 25-17 third-set win that made it a 2-1 Guilford lead.

Flanagan had six kills on .333 hitting in the fourth set, which helped the Panthers open a 22-19 advantage. The Quakers staved off two set points in the set and tied the match at 24-24 on a Flanagan hitting error. After an ace by Hawks, Ferrum took a time-out at the first match point and got another kill from Flanagan and tied the score at 25-25. The teams traded hard-fought points before Guilford’s Courtney Kozar and Mary Moody tallied consecutive kills to end the match.

Miller added 15 digs and 12 points, both team highs, to her 12 kills. Shanika Tunnell had nine kills on .353 hitting and three blocks for the Quakers. Stephanie Blankenship had eight kills and Emma Gunn added six, plus four blocks. Taylor Phillips (24) and Kate Dailey (22) combined for 46 assists.

Flanagan added 14 digs and a service ace to her 17 kills. The Panthers scooped up 87 digs in the four-set match, led by libero Thurman’s 23 pickups. Hannah Shumaker had 21 digs, five kills and 10 assists.

Guilford closes the regular season Friday (10/31) against visiting Salem College at 6:30 p.m. on the Quakers’ Senior Night. Ferrum concludes its regular season at home Saturday (11/1) versus league-rivals North Carolina Wesleyan College and Christopher Newport University.