UVA Volleyball defeats Furman in season opener

uva athleticsUVA volleyball (1-0) earned a 25-13, 25-13, 22-25, 25-21, victory over Furman (0-2) to open the 2019 season on Friday (Aug. 30) inside of Memorial Gymnasium.

Sophomore Grace Turner (Cincinnati, Ohio) paced Virginia with a career-high 21 kills. Turner hit .400 for the match, just shy of her career-best .412 mark, and added 13 digs for a double-double. Opposite Turner, junior Sarah Billiard (Matthews, N.C.) balanced the attack with 14 kills while hitting .458.

“I think Grace had a career high in the first two sets,” head coach Aaron Smith said. “I think she showed what she’s going to be about these next three years and that’s some pretty high-level volleyball. We’ve been seeing it since spring and we know what kind of talent we have in her. She’s going to be a leader on the court for us this year and she has the people around her to support her on the court. We’re excited for her this year.”

Virginia hit .270 as a team while holding Furman to just .094 on the night. The Paladins were led by Nicole Mack who floored 15 kills, but committed 10 errors.

SET 1: Virginia 25-13 Furman
The Cavaliers raced out of the gates to a 19-10 advantage behind five kills from Turner. Virginia recorded three blocks, including a pair of block assists from junior Christine Jarman (Boynton Beach, Fla.) and senior Chino Anukwuem (East Hanover, N.J.). The Cavaliers held Furman to a -.038 hitting percentage in the set, as the Paladins were stifled to just five kills while committing six errors.

SET 2: Virginia 25-13 Furman
Once again, Virginia roared to a quick 9-1 lead. Like the first set, it was Turner leading the charge as the outside hitter knocked down eight kills in the frame. The Cavaliers controlled the set, hitting a blistering .464. Sophomore Milla Cirpian (St. John’s, Fla.) added a pair of blocks to three kills in the frame.

SET 3: Furman 25-22 Virginia
With a 2-0 lead in the match, Virginia turned to its youthful bench in the third set. After early jitters led to an 18-12 Furman advantage, the Cavaliers regrouped to pull within 23-22 but Furman recorded a crucial kill to see out the set.

Billiard led the Cavaliers with six kills while Ciprian recorded two more blocks in the set.

SET 4: Virginia 25-21 Furman
The Cavaliers turned up the heat defensively to close out the match in the fourth set. Virginia racked up five blocks, led by three block assists from Anukwuem. The result was an .040 hitting percentage for Furman in the frame.


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