Site: High Point, N.C.
Score: High Point 3, UNC-Asheville 0 (25-20, 25-17, 25-18)
Records: HPU 22-6 (14-1 Big South), UNC-Asheville 6-18 (4-11 Big South)
Next HPU Event: Saturday, November 13, 2021 — vs. USC-Upstate (High Point, N.C.), 2:00 PM
HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University volleyball team picked up its 22nd win of the regular season with a 3-0 sweep over UNC-Asheville. The Panthers head into the final game of the regular season with a one game lead on Campbell in the Big South regular season standings. The Panthers will look to close out the regular season title tomorrow in a game against USC-Upstate. Senior Gabrielle Idlebird led the Panthers will 11 kills on the day to go along with an impressive .471 hitting percentage. Idelbird chipped in 3 blocks on the day. Maggie Salley also added 10 kills in the match. Freshman libero Jenny Wessling led the Panthers with 18 digs on the day.
Ryan Meek: “Our goal for the team was to play together and have great spirit and I thought our energy was terrific tonight. We spread the ball out well and a lot of players contributed to our win. It was great to get to start the seniors in their second to last match at Millis and I’m happy we get to do that again tomorrow and celebrate them a bit more!”
The Panthers got off to a slow start and fell behind 3-7 in the first set. However, they responded with a 7-1 run to take a 10-8 lead. Salley propelled the Panthers during this run with three kills, while Sopheea Mink also added two kills as well. The Bulldogs rallied to cut the score to 11-10, before the Panthers went on 7-0 run to extend their lead to 18-10. Idlebird added a kill and a block during this run to extend the lead for the Purple and White. The teams battled back and forth before the Panthers put away Bulldogs with kills by Madison Smith on the 24th and 25th points of the first set.
The Bulldogs and Panthers battled back and forth in the second set with both teams even at 8 points apiece to start. The Panthers then went on an incredible 13-1 run, which were two service runs led by Wessling and then Mackenzi Thornburg. Sydney Palazzolo had three kills during the first 5-0 service run. Idlebird and Smith then alternated kills during the service run from Thornburg. Haley Maeurer subbed in for Thornburg and finished off serving the final three points of the run. Salley put the exclamation point on the second set with a kill for set point.
The third and final set was tight to open with the Panthers taking an 8-6 lead after a kill from Salley. The Panthers went on a 4-1 run to extend the lead to 12-7. The run included a kill from Idelbird and back to back kills by Dylan Maberry. The Bulldogs rallied and were able to cut the deficit to two at 17-15. The Panthers responded with a 6-0 run to extend the lead to 23-15 and put the game out of reach. Maberry had two more kills during this run to assert her dominance in the set. The Panthers finished with an attack error from UNC-Ashville and won the third set 25-18.
The Panthers played tremendous defense on the day as they held the Bulldogs to a .136 hitting percentage on the evening. The also had 6 blocks on the day and 48 assists, compared to only 30 for the Bulldogs.
High Point completes the final home game of the season and its quest for the Big South regular season championship on Saturday, November 13th. The Panthers will host USC-Upstate and first serve is set for 2pm in High Point.