Oct. 2, 2003
Cullowhee, N.C. - Western Carolina's volleyball team stretched its home unbeaten streak to 7-0 Thursday night by shutting out UNC Greensboro, 30-20, 33-31, 30-19. With the win, the Catamounts improve to 10-7 overall and 3-1 in the SoCon, while UNCG drops to 6-10, 2-2.
Western never trailed in the first game and posted a match-high .410 hitting percentage to take control of the match early. Layna Stoetzel served three straight points for the Cats and ended the game by serving up four straight points, including an ace, one of three on the night for her. The game ended at 30-20 on an attack error by UNCG's Kim Dayton.
The Spartans gained momentum in the second stanza as they took the lead at 3-2 on a kill by Lori Brooks. Greensboro held on to that lead and edged the Cats by as many as seven points in the game. However, Western inched its way back into the contest and tied it up at 27 a piece on a kill by Heather Koontz, one of her season-high 14 of the night. WCU eventually took the lead back from the Spartans at 30-29 after a kill by Stoetzel, but UNCG would not go down easily. Greensboro tied things up on the next play after a kill by Dayton. Two kills and an attack error on Kellyn Thaut made the score 32-31 in the Cats' favor. With Thaut serving for game-point, WCU's Ellie Talbot knocked down the ball with authority to give Western the second game.
The third game started out just as close as the previous one had ended. Western took the lead for good, however, at 6-5 on a kill by Sara Komosinski. The Catamounts never looked back and put the game away on a kill by Michelle Gorton to end the game at 30-19 to win the match.
Western's .365 hitting percentage was its second-best showing of the season offensively, with 63 kills on 126 attacks and 17 errors. It was additionally the most kills in a three-game match the Cats have posted so far this season. Arby's/Catamount Student-Athlete of the Month Shari Harder had an excellent night for WCU with a season-high 45 assists for a three-game match, adding eight kills on nine attacks with no errors for a .889 attack percentage. Thaut led the Cats with 16 kills and 13 digs.
UNCG was led by Dayton with 13 kills on 33 attacks and only four errors for a .273 hitting percentage. Rebekah Faulise led the team with 11 digs. The Spartans hit .186 for the match and notched 34 digs, while Western had 53.
The Lady Cats end their home stand Friday night, Oct. 3, against Elon in the first ever conference match between the two teams. In a special pre-match ceremony, the athletic department will be recognizing and honoring the four WCU volleyball teams that have won Southern Conference championships. They include the 1983, '85, '86 and '89 teams. Please join the current Catamounts and staff members in honoring these teams as we will be raising banners in recognition of their accomplishments. The ceremony is scheduled to begin at 6:50 pm with the match starting at 7:00.