Cavaliers Sweep Boston College on Senior Day
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia volleyball team sent its three seniors – AJ Cushman, Sydney Hill and Kendahl Voelker – off in style on Saturday evening, sweeping conference-foe Boston College, 3-0 (25-17, 25-19, 25-15), in the Cavaliers’ final match in Memorial Gymnasium this season. With the win, Virginia improves to 13-12 on the year and 7-8 in the ACC, while Boston College drops to 8-20 overall and 0-15 in the league.
“I’m happy that we responded well tonight,” head coach Lee Maes said. “Obviously, we had some extra motivation because we wanted to send our seniors off with a victory in their last home match here. I’m really proud of our fourth years and how they have represented our program. They’ve been outstanding examples of leadership through their ability to make others around them better and more productive. They’ve been consummate givers and wonderful role models to our underclassmen. I’m proud of them as student-athletes, and more so, as people.”
Freshman McKenzie Adams led the Cavaliers’ offense with 13 kills, while junior Simone Asque knocked down 10. Redshirt sophomore Beth Wildermuth recorded her sixth career double-double, dishing out 36 assists to go with 10 digs.
Senior AJ Cushman paced the defense, collecting a match-high 13 digs, while senior Sydney Hill led the front line with four blocks.
For Boston College, Tsvetelina Dureva led the attack with eight kills, while Brennan Clark had 12 digs. Cagla Sen dished out 16 attacks and Krystle Higgins earned five blocks.
Throughout the match, the Cavaliers’ offense hit .318 and landed 48 kills. Virginia’s defense collected eight blocks and 50 digs, while limiting Boston College’s offense to 27 kills and a .078 attack percentage.
Virginia opened the first set unstoppable, cruising to a 21-3 advantage – it’s largest lead over an opponent all season. The Eagles responded though, recording 13 of the next 15 points before the Cavaliers sealed the match at 25-17.
The Cavaliers carried the momentum into the second set, jumping out to a 6-1 lead. The Eagles brought the score back within three, at 13-10, but couldn’t gain an advantage as the Cavaliers extended their lead back to six, at 16-10. The rest of the set was a back-and-forth battle, but Virginia held on to win, 25-19.
The third set opened evenly; as the squads traded points and created nine tie scores in the first 13 points. Virginia broke open a 13-13 tie score though, scoring six of the next seven points to pull ahead, 19-14. The Eagles responded with back-to-back points, but Virginia went on to end the set on a 5-0 run to take a 25-15 victory.
With the win, Virginia’s senior class of Cushman, Hill and Voelker close out their four-year career with an overall record of 33-22 in Mem Gym, including the program’s second-ever win over a nationally ranked opponent – and first since 1996. Virginia defeated No. 25 Florida State in five sets last weekend.
“We still have some work to do to be able to work our way toward a postseason berth,” Maes said. “That will be a great gift if we can finish strong and send the seniors off with some wins on the road.”
Virginia will close out the regular season on a five-match road swing. Up first, the Cavaliers will head to Clemson and Georgia Tech. Virginia will face the Tigers Friday, Nov. 12 at 7 p.m., before taking on the Yellow Jackets Sunday, Nov. 14 at 1 p.m.