HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University volleyball team was swept by VCU on Tuesday night. The Panthers battled in front of 1,057 fans at the Millis Center. Junior Chelsea Davis led HPU with 13 kills and freshman Crystal Widom added four kills, four aces and two blocks.
“We had a great environment at the Millis Center tonight,” said head coach Jason Oliver. “We are very thankful to get inspiration and motivation from the fans. VCU is one of the best teams we will face all season and we competed with them the entire match. We still have room to improve but this game will show us exactly what areas we need to focus on.”
Redshirt-freshman Savannah Angel tallied a career-high seven kills with a .500 attack percentage for the Panthers. She also added two blocks. Senior Maddie Simpson dished out 15 assists and freshman Val Jeffery added 13 in dual action for HPU.
Romana Kriskova posted a match-high 17 kills with a .519 attack percentage for VCU. Kalah Jones was second on the team with nine kills.
VCU continued their red-hot start to the season, improving to 9-2 for the season. The loss drops HPU to 4-7.
Davis put down eight kills on 11 swings in the first set but it wasn’t enough to get the win for the Panthers, as VCU pulled out a 25-23 victory. Widom went up to solo block Jones and give HPU a 22-19 lead in the frame. The Rams scored the next three points to tie the match up 22-22. HPU briefly led again, 23-22, after a Rams attack error, but back-to-back VCU kills made it set point, 24-23. It appeared HPU had tied the set on a kill by Simpson but she was called for a net violation and VCU held on for the 25-23 win.
The Rams outhit HPU .417 to .292 in the second set to win the frame 25-17. Kriskova had five kills in the set for VCU.
Despite an early deficit, HPU pulled within one of VCU late in the third set. The Panthers went on a three-point run with sophomore Annemarie Chin at the service line to make it an 18-17 VCU lead. Jones had a kill to side out for the Rams who kept the lead for the remainder of the set, winning 25-18.
The Panthers will host the HPU Classic this weekend, welcoming North Carolina A&T, Davidson and Murray State to the Millis Center. HPU will face N.C. A&T on Friday at 5 p.m. to begin the tournament.