🎙 @vbcoachwells shares her thoughts on today’s hard-fought five-set match and the support of our AMAZING fans who came out to support us today ✊#GoHoos⚔️ pic.twitter.com/U3WRNh6qly
— Virginia Volleyball (@UVAVolleyball) September 25, 2022
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia outside hitter Grace Turner tied her career high of 23 kills and posted a career-best six service aces, but the Cavaliers fell in five sets (25-22, 25-20, 15-25, 14-25, 14-16) to North Carolina in Memorial Gymnasium on Sunday afternoon. In addition to her 23 kills and six aces, Turner finished Sunday’s contest with seven digs, three block assists and was 27-for-27 in serve-receive.
With the win, North Carolina improved to 9-4 overall and 1-1 in ACC play, while the Cavaliers slipped to 8-5 overall and 0-2 in league matches.
After dropping the first two sets, the Tar Heels came back to win three straight games and staring down a match point for UVA in the fifth. The loss was Virginia’s second requiring five sets on the weekend, having dropped another heartbreaker to NC State just two days ago (Sept. 23).
HOW IT HAPPENED
- After trailing 10-4 early on in set No. 1, the Cavaliers fought their way back to win it, 25-22. Turner was behind the service line for four consecutive UVA points amid a 5-0 run by the Cavaliers to cut the UNC lead to 10-9. Later, back-to-back UVA points delivered its first lead of the game, 15-14. A kill by middle blocker Veresia Yon broke a 16-16 tie a few plays later and from there the Cavaliers held on to the lead for the remainder of the frame. Yon’s third kill of the set capped the first in favor of the Cavaliers.
- In the second, Virginia put together one of its best sets of the season, after winning, 25-20. Trailing 16-15, the Cavaliers broke the game open after tallying five straight points to secure a 20-16 lead. Virginia went on to score the final three points of the set while achieving a .321 hitting percentage. Defensively, the Cavaliers were perfect in serve-receive, successfully handling all 18 UNC serves during the set. Middle blocker Abby Tadder, who finished with a match-high six block assists, led UVA with three block assists in the second as UVA totaled 4.0 blocks in the set, while the Tar Heels had none. Turner posted six kills on seven swings in game No. 2 in addition to a pair of aces.
- Coming out of the break, North Carolina leaped out to a 14-5 lead. The Cavaliers started to settle in towards the middle of the third, but the deficit was too much for Virginia to overcome as the Tar Heels got on the board with a 25-15 win. UNC hit .483 in the third after posting 16 kills on 29 swings with just two attack errors. For the second set in a row, Turner posted six kills terminated six balls, this time on 10 swings.
- Another huge lead for the Tar Heels early in the fourth proved to be the difference as UNC evened the match, 2-2, with its 25-14 win. The Cavaliers cut the UNC lead to seven twice, but the Tar Heels scored the final four points of the set to close it out. Four reception errors and just seven assists disrupted the flow of the Cavaliers’ offense, which had just eight kills and hit .111 in game No. 4.
- Virginia led 10-8 to open the fifth before North Carolina scored three straight with the help of two UVA errors to grasp its first lead of the set since winning the opening point. Coming out of a North Carolina timeout, the two teams were tied 13-13 before Easton found Yon on a slide, which she put down with force to give the Cavaliers match point. North Carolina responded by scoring back-to-back points to flip the score give the Tar Heels match point, which prompted a UVA timeout. Coming out of the huddle, a Virginia attack error sealed set, 16-14, and match and delivered the Tar Heels’ first ACC win of the season.
- Outside hitter Grace Turner tied her career high of 23 kills on 46 swings and had just seven attack errors to hit .348. Turner set her career high of 23 kills in UVA’s five-set win over Charlotte (Sept. 9) earlier this season.
- Turner also posted a career-best six service aces, the most by a Cavalier in a single match since Jelena Novakovic’s six against UNCW on Sept. 7, 2018. Turner was the only Cavalier to register an ace on the day. She also successfully passed all 27 UNC serves sent in her direction.
- The Cavaliers out-blocked North Carolina 12.0 to 9.5. Virginia’s 12.0 blocks tied its season high, which the Cavaliers achieved in their season opener, a four-set victory over ETSU (Aug. 27) in Gainesville, Florida.
- Set No. 5 featured eight tied scores and four lead changes. Both teams had match point in the fifth.
Virginia concludes its eight-match homestand on Wednesday (Sept. 28) when the Cavaliers host No. 10 Pittsburgh (11-2, 2-0 ACC). First serve is scheduled for 8 p.m. on ACC Network.