STAUNTON, Va. - The Avenging Angels volleyball squad recovered from a 3-0 (25-21, 25-19, 25-19) loss to Piedmont College before sweeping host Mary Baldwin 3-0 (25-21, 25-10, 25-19) in today's USA South action.
Meredith sits in fifth in the early conference standings with a 2-2 record (9-6 overall). Piedmont improved to 2-0 with the Fighting Squirrels falling to 0-2 in the opening weeks of league play.
The Avenging Angels opened the day with Piedmont. The Lions took an early 8-3 lead over Meredith. Outside Cori Spade launched a kill from setter Kara Baughman to ignite a 4-0 Meredith run. The team capitalized on a pair of miscues from Piedmont when Spade and Molly Markly stuffed an attack to bring the Avenging Angels to within one.
PC's Danielle Maffett put one down for the Lions before a reception error and an offensive error kept Meredith at bay. Markley earned two blasts with swings from Spade and freshman standout Jasmine Aguinaldo to keep the Avenging Angels in the mix.
Aguinaldo earned a solo block and a kill to pull to within three at 16-13.
Each time the Avenging Angels would get close, the Lions pulled away and took an eventual 1-0 lead.
Meredith regrouped during the break and came out swinging. Clarke Glendenning launched back-to-back aces to push her team to an 8-5 edge.
The Lions unleashed an attack earning four kills in the next six plays. Four more miscues from the Avenging Angels put Piedmont out front by five at 14-9.
Piedmont faltered on the next two plays before pounding once again on the Meredith defense with a trio of kills assisted by Katheryn Knarr.
Markley and Baughman earned a pair of points for Meredith but could not push the team over the hump before PC upped their advantage to two.
Head Coach Fiona Barkley appeared to bring her team around when Meredith forced an early 6-5 lead. But under the steady serving of Xandy Green, Piedmont took control with seven straight for a 12-6 edge.
Meredith would not recover before falling 3-0 in the match.
Fortunately, the Avenging Angels put the loss aside for the nightcap with host Mary Baldwin. Baughman set up Aguinaldo for the swing and followed with an ace to open 2-1 versus the Squirrels.
After dropping four of the next five points, Aguinaldo teamed up with freshman Emily Hendricks for a stuff to unleash an 11-1 run that would catapult Meredith to a set-one win.
After an even 4-4 score in set two, the Avenging Angels pulled away from Mary Baldwin in the next four plays and never looked back. A pair of kills from Markley and Hendricks on the serving from freshman libero Ally White completed the 25-10 set win for a 2-0 advantage.
But Meredith struggled to put the Fighting Squirrels away. The teams traded points on errors in the opening plays. A kill from Baughman and an assist on a blast from Sarah Brandon set up Anna Hayes to fire an ace. A miscue from MBC and blasts from Hendricks and Markley drove the lead to four when Carla Lunday subbed in for a service ace.
A pair of kills from MBC's Kharla Bethea and a stuff from Jonquil Brown brought the opponent to within three at 13-10.
But the Fighting Squirrles stumbled in the next two plays. Back-to-back blasts from Hendricks kept the Avenging Angels on top. She added two more kills and launched an ace to help her team pull away for the sweep.
Meredith travels midweek to Laurinburg for non-conference action with St. Andrews followed by Guilford on October 4. The team returns to Weatherspoon Gym Wednesday, October 10, for the Dig Pink game with Methodist.