CHARLESTON, S.C. – Three Panthers recorded double-digit kills to lead the High Point University volleyball team to a 3-1 win at Charleston Southern on Saturday. Junior Kristin Heldt led all attackers with 22 kills while juniors Chelsea Davis and Katie Vincent also had kills in double figures.
“Before the match we talked to the team about finishing the weekend strong and building on Friday’s win,” said head coach Jason Oliver. “We continue to have success when we focus on the details and that helps solidify the culture of the program. Katie Vincent had a big game and once again we got tremendous performance and leadership from Kristin Heldt, Chelsea Davis and Maddie Simpson.”
Heldt had a double-double for the second straight night, adding 14 digs to her 22 kills. Davis also tallied a double-double with 17 kills and 13 digs. Vincent added 13 kills and five blocks in the win.
The Panthers improve to 8-10 overall and 2-1 in the Big South with the 3-1 (25-21, 22-25, 25-14, 25-21) win. Charleston Southern drops to 5-13 for the season and remains winless, 0-4, in league play.
Erin Lavenice led the Buccs with 12 kills and Siraya Windsor added 11 kills and nine digs.
The Panthers stormed out to a first set win, 25-21, led by Heldt’s seven kills in the opening set. Davis broke a 20-20 tie with a kill, giving the Panthers a 21-20 lead. Molly Hirrlinger went back to the service line and pushed the Panthers lead to 23-20. Siraya Windsor sided out for the Buccaneers, but Davis and Heldt ended the set with back-to-back kills.
Charleston Southern evened the match with a 25-22 win in set two. HPU led the first half of the set before CSU tied it up 15-15 on a block by Windsor and Taylor Allman. The frame was tied two more times, finally at 18-18, before CSU took the lead for good, on another kill by Windsor. HPU fought off two set points on a kill by Davis and an attack error by Windsor, but Lavenice put down her fourth kill of the night to win the set for CSU.
High Point hit .406 in the third set to roll to a 25-14 win. Heldt had six kills on 10 swings in the frame and Davis added four kills on six attempts. The Panthers used a pair of four-point runs to open up am 11-5 lead. High Point used a series of three and four-point runs to open up the lead even more, eventually winning the set 25-14.
The Buccaneers didn’t quit in set four, even when High Point led 23-16 late in the frame. CSU rattled off five-straight points to close the lead to 23-21, capping the run with a kill by Kayla Klinger. Katrina Houston served the next ball long to bring up match point for the Panthers. Freshman Savannah Angel ended the match with a kill on the next play.
Senior Maddie Simpson dished out 49 assists while picking up nine digs and three blocks. Sophomore Annemarie Chin had 26 digs, marking the sixth straight match she has 20 or more digs.
High Point returns home next weekend for a pair of Big South matches. The Panthers will host Radford on Friday at 7 p.m. and Liberty on Saturday at 2 p.m.