Volleyball Closes Home Schedule with Victory Over Western Carolina
GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNCG volleyball earned a four-set victory (25-22, 23-25, 25-22, 25-19) over the Western Carolina Catamounts Wednesday night in Fleming Gymnasium. The Spartans improve to 16-11 on the season, and 10-4 in the Southern Conference. Western Carolina falls to 10-17, and 5-9 in SoCon play. The Spartans end the regular season 10-3 at home; the third-straight season that UNCG has earned at least 10 wins in Fleming Gymnasium.
Ashley Muench (Hurdle Mills, N.C./Orange) led the Spartans with 19 kills, while adding 16 digs. It marks her 11th double-double of the season, and her fourth-in-a-row. Jessica Brezwyn (Darien, Ill./Hinsdale South) added 12 kills, her first double figure night since Oct. 19. Jasmine Jones (Stafford, Va./Brook Point) pitched in with 11 kills, hitting at a .474 average. Jones and Muench, along with Chinwendu Ngwadom (Raleigh, N.C./Chicago State) added four block assists apiece.
Allison Penner (Aurora, Neb./Aurora) earned 53 assists in the match, her 10th match of the year with more than 50 assists. Penner also led the team with six block assists and added eight digs.
The Spartan defense earned 68 digs on the night, led by a 26-dig performance from sophomore libero Christina Gregory (Louisville, Ky./Sacred Heart Academy). Muench added 16 digs and Anna Romaniszyn (Port Orange, Fla./Spruce Creek) added eight.
The Spartans and Catamounts played a very close first set, with each team earning 19 points before the Spartans could separate. UNCG earned back-to-back points on a Muench kill and a Catamount hitting error to force a WCU time out. UNCG got two more points on a Jones kill, and another Catamount error. Back-to-back WCU points cut it to 24-22, before Alexis Mourier (Elkview, W.Va./George Washington) closed the set with her third kill.
WCU and UNCG played another tight set in the second. After being tied at 17, The Catamounts earned back-to-back points to force the Spartans’ first timeout. UNCG was able to cut the WCU lead down to one on four occasions before Western Carolina was able to put the set away on a block assist from Alyssa Zupan and Aleah Keaton.
The Spartans answered Western Carolina in the third set. After being tied at 17, UNCG earned back-to-back points on a WCU attack error and a block assist from Ngwadom and Penner. A Ngwadom kill gave UNCG a three-point advantage at 21-18, forcing the Catamounts to call their final timeout. WCU was able to trim the Spartan lead to one following an Abigail Veit kill and a block assist from Keaton and Jo-Leigh Vervelde. UNCG closed the set scoring three of the final four points, with the set ending on a WCU service error.
The fourth set was another tight one, with neither team able to separate until the 15-point mark. The Spartans earned back-to-back points on a block assist from Ngwadom and Muench, and a Muench kill, forcing WCU to call its first timeout. UNCG used a 5-0 to gain a 22-16 advantage, in that run the Spartans were aided by kills from Jones and Mourier, a block assist from that same pair, and two WCU attack errors. UNCG scored three of the final four points to take the set and the match. Muench, Brezwyn and Jones each added kills to finish the set, and the match.
UNCG is back in action Friday, Sept. 11 as it travels to Birmingham, Ala. for a matchup with the Samford Bulldogs at 5:00 p.m.