TOLEDO, OHIO - The West Virginia University volleyball team posted a 3-1 (25-17, 24-26, 25-20, 25-20) win over Eastern Illinois in its first match of the Blue/Gold Invitational in Toledo, Ohio on Saturday afternoon.
The Mountaineers (1-0) have now opened their season with a win in three of the last four seasons.
“It was a good start to the season. We did a good job staying focused on our plan for serving and passes, which is really important this time of year,” says coach Jill Kramer. “The things we want to be focused on early in the year, we did a good job of executing.”
West Virginia began its 2013 season, earning the win in a back-and-forth first set, 25-17. Freshman outsider hitter Jordan Anderson
led the way with five kills on 11 attempts for a .273 hitting percentage. Sophomore setter Brittany Sample
dished out 12 assists.
“We had great effort. I thought our middles did a great job,” Kramer says. “Brittany (Sample) did an awesome job running the offense. And, I thought Jordan Anderson
had a great debut.”
The Mountaineers would trail 16-9 in the second set, before clawing their way back. West Virginia would hold a 24-23 advantage late, however, EIU would eventually claim set two, 26-24.
Sophomore Caleah Wells
continued to add to her impressive day in the third set. Wells and the Mountaineers would jump out to an early 7-1 advantage and never look back, winning the set 25-20.
Wells would go on to tie a career-high with 13 kills on 20 attempts for a .550 hitting percentage.
“Caleah works really hard in the middle,” Kramer says. “The time and effort she has put in this offseason was apparent today, and she did that consistently throughout the match.”
West Virginia continued to add to its block total in the fourth set, accumulating 22 blocks assists on the day, while earning a 25-20 set win to clinch the match.
“Blocking was something we really worked on and I thought it really paid off today,” Kramer says.
Sample would tally 47 assists for the match, while Anderson would lead all players with 17 kills.
WVU will be back in competition this evening, as it will face Loyola-Chicago at 5 p.m.