Sept. 18, 2012
CULLOWHEE, N.C. - The Western Carolina volleyball team returned to the friendly confines of the Ramsey Center Tuesday evening and used a consistent .307 hitting percentage and long opening runs to sweep the Gardner-Webb Bulldogs . Returning from an 11 match road swing, the Catamounts had five finish with six kills or more.
"It was great to be back at home after being on the road so long with one match before conference play begins," said head coach Karen Glover.
"Our passing was great tonight. Tina [Nazario] did a really nice job of distributing the offense. I was pleased with our defensive play tonight."
The Catamounts wasted no time in the match, starting out with a 6-0 run in the first set, forcing an early timeout by the Bulldogs. Despite a four point swing late in the set, the Bulldogs were never able to recover from the hot start by WCU with the Catamounts taking the set, 25-18.
In the second set, the WCU momentum continued with the Purple and Gold rolling to a 5-1 lead. The Bulldogs chipped away at the early start and pulled within two at 8-6. The Catamounts led by as many as 10 in the set, winning the second by a score of 25-16 going into the break.
The third set began with sophomore middle blocker Addy George having a hot hand, scoring three of Western Carolina's first four points with WCU jumping out to a 6-2 lead. The Catamounts would extend their lead to 10-4 before Gardner-Webb called a timeout to attempt to slow WCU's momentum.
Gardner-Webb began to claw back into the set, picking up a point out of the timeout with a kill from Heather Feldman. The Bulldogs got within four with score 22-18, but a kill by middle blocker Leah Butler off the dish from Tina Nazario slowed GWU. WCU took the set and the match, winning the third, 25-19, off another Leah Butler kill.
Four Catamounts - Nicole Ford (8), Addy George (9), Jordan Timmermann (8), Caitlin Piechota (8) and Abbey Scroggins (6) - all finished with at least six kills in the match. Freshman setter Tina Nazario pitched a balanced game, dishing out 39 assists. She also picked up three kills of her own, four digs and two blocks. George led the team in blocks with three.
Almost equally as impressive were the hitting percentage from those Catamounts with six or more kills as they all hit about .250, with Addy George hitting at an impressive .667 clip. WCU as a team hit .500 in the third set.
Junior Morgan Cochran scooped up 21 digs to lead the Catamounts in that category. Cochran has 12 matches with double-digit kills, with six of those over 20.
The Catamounts once again return to the road this weekend to begin SoCon play against the Samford Bulldogs in Birmingham, Ala., on Friday at 6:00 p.m. Following the Samford match, Western Carolina travels to Chattanooga, Tenn., to take on the Mocs. That match begins at 3:00 p.m. All results and live stats can be accessed through CatamountSports.com.