CLEVELAND, OHIO – The High Point University volleyball team lost a tough battle to UC Irvine on Saturday at the Cleveland State Invitational in Cleveland, Ohio. The Anteaters narrowly edged HPU 31-29 in the second set and used the momentum to sweep the match 3-0 (25-15, 31-29, 25-18)
“I was pleased with the way the team responded after a tough loss last night,” said head coach Jason Oliver. “We just couldn’t catch up with UC Irvine’s fast offense. We have a lot of work to do defensively but I know we are capable and we will get there.”
Junior Chelsea Davis paced the HPU offense with 12 kills to go along with seven digs and two blocks. Senior Maddie Simpson recorded 22 assists, eight digs and two blocks. Sophomore Annemarie Chin led the Panthers with 10 digs and sophomore Wavie Chin was right behind with nine.
UC Irvine had three attackers with double-digit kills led by Aly Squires with 17 kills and 12 digs. Allison Lee also had a double-double with 14 kills and 16 digs. Marisa Bubica added 12 kills.
With the win UC Irvine remains undefeated on the year with a 5-0 record. The loss drops High Point to 2-3 with one game remaining in the Cleveland State Invitational.
The Panthers rebounded from a 25-15 loss in the first set with an increased energy and focus in the second set. HPU quickly took a 4-0 lead in the second frame with freshman Megan Kennedy at the service line. UCI tied the score 5-5, the first of 17 ties in the second set. With the score tied 23-23 Davis put down a kill to bring up set point for the Panthers. UCI sided out to again knot the score, 24-24. Davis answered with another kill for HPU’s second set point, 25-24. Four ties later, with the score at 29-29, Bubica scored on back-to-back swings to win the set 31-29 for the Anteaters.
Shannon Fleming served three straight aces to open up an 11-5 lead for UC Irvine in the third set. They maintained the lead for the rest of the frame to sweep HPU in three sets.
Junior Chelsea Blanford finished the match with six kills and six digs and Kennedy tallied seven digs.
High Point will face IPFW in the final match of the Cleveland State Invitational at 4:30 p.m.