HPU Volleyball Falls In Five Sets To Radford

• High Point fell in five sets to Radford on Senior Day
• Senior Kristin Heldt and freshman Haley Barnes recorded double-doubles
• HPU finishes the season next weekend at Charleston Southern and Coastal Carolina

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University volleyball team forced a decisive fifth set before ultimately falling 3-2 (25-22, 20-25, 25-18, 18-25, 15-11) to Radford on Saturday afternoon at the Millis Center.

With the victory, Radford momentarily moved to the top of the conference standings at 20-7 (10-2 Big South). High Point drops to 11-14 (5-7 Big South).

“It was a well-played back-and-forth match that was fun to watch,” head coach Jason Oliver said. “This match will serve as motivation for our team to go out and continue the process of getting better every single day. We’re taking a lot of momentum out of this weekend.”

Both team hit solidly throughout the match, with High Point out-hitting Radford, .238 to .204. The Panthers also had the edge in digs (96-86), blocks (10-3) and service aces (5-2). The Highlanders led in kills (67-64) and assists (60-58).

Senior Kristin Heldt recorded her 11th double-double of the season with 16 kills and 14 digs while hitting .405. Freshman Haley Barnes notched her third double-double with 15 kills and 18 digs while fellow freshman Camryn Freiberg hit .355 with 14 kills and eight blocks.

Junior setter Gabi Mirand contributed 50 assists in the match to go along with four kills while hitting .300. Junior libero Wavie Chin tied her career high with 32 digs, continuing her strong play over the last four matches in which she’s averaging 6.3 digs per set.

High Point jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first set, but Radford, thanks to six kills from Rachel Wiechecki, took an 11-9 advantage. The Highlanders extended the lead to 16-11 and High Point would get no closer than two points, ultimately dropping the set, 25-22.

HPU fell behind in the second set 13-10 before head coach Jason Oliver took timeout. The Panther responded by scoring three straight and nine of the next 11 points to take a commanding 19-15 lead. They went on to win the set, 25-20.

Neither team was able to gain separation until a 4-0 spurt from Radford put the Highlanders ahead 12-10. Radford opened its lead to 21-17 and took four of the final five points to earn the set win at 25-18.

With its back against the wall, High Point started the fourth set out in front 7-4 and never looked back. HPU hit .419 in the fourth set to cruise to a 25-18 victory.

The decisive fifth set was tied at four-all before Radford jumped ahead on back-to-back kills from Wiechecki. The Highlanders pushed their lead to as many as six at 14-8 before the Panthers responded with three straight points, closing the gap to 14-11. However, Savannah Cantrell came through with a kill to finish the match for RU.

The Panthers are back in action next weekend for their final two regular season matches of the season. HPU travels to face Charleston Southern on Friday at 7 p.m. and Coastal Carolina on Saturday at 11:30 a.m.