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CLEMSON, S.C. – Despite junior Simone Asque landing her 1,000th career kill, the Virginia volleyball team opened its five-match road swing with a tough loss, 1-3 (25-23, 16-25, 27-29, 21-25), at Clemson Friday night. The loss drops the Cavaliers to an even 13-13 on the season and 7-9 in the ACC, while Clemson improves to 16-11 overall and 7-9 in the league.

With Asque’s first kill in the second set, she became the 15th Cavalier in program history to reach the 1,000-kill plateau. She currently has 1,009 career kills in her three seasons.

Asque and freshman McKenzie Adams shared team-high honors tonight with 13 kills each. Senior Sydney Hill and sophomore Jess O’Shoney added 11 and 10, respectively, to mark the second time this season that four Cavaliers have reached double-digit kills in the same match. Hill’s 11 kills is a season-high for her and ties her career-high.

Defensively, senior AJ Cushman earned a team-high 19 digs, while freshman Emily Rottman contributed 16. At the net, O’Shoney blocked a match-high eight attacks and Adams recorded four.

Redshirt sophomore Beth Wildermuth distributed 44 assists and just missed a double-double, picking up nine digs.

For Clemson, Serenat Yaz and Sandra Adeleye each tallied a match-high 16 kills, while Natalie Patzin earned a match-high 22 digs. Hannah Brenner dished out 53 assists for the Tigers, while Adeleye, Brenner and Alexa Rand each blocked three attacks.

The Cavaliers came out on top of an evenly matched opening frame. With nine tie scores and four lead changes, the game came down to a knotted 23 all score, before Rottman landed a kill to put Virginia up 24-23. Asque and O’Shoney then secured the 25-23 set win, combining for a block.

Set two was close throughout the beginning before Clemson took control of the frame with an 8-1 run to pull ahead, 22-14. The streak was too much for the Cavaliers to overcome, as the Tigers went on to win, 25-16.

The third set was a battle, featuring 17 tie scores. With the score knotted at 20, the Tigers pulled ahead 24-21, but the Cavaliers fought off four of Clemson’s set-point opportunities before taking a 26-25 advantage of their own. The Tigers worked to even the score again at 26, but Asque landed a kill to give the Cavaliers another one-point lead. Clemson responded though, knocking down three-unanswered kills to take the set, 29-27.

Clemson carried the momentum into the fourth frame, pulling ahead 10-3. The Tigers extended their lead to 10, at 16-6, before the Cavaliers were able to string together six points to cut their deficit to four, at 16-12. Virginia continued to work, pulling within two at 22-20, but Clemson called a timeout and regrouped to score three of the next four points, earning a 25-21 victory.

The Cavaliers will return to action Sunday, heading to Atlanta to face Georgia Tech at 1 p.m.

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