BREVARD, N.C. - The Brevard College Tornados Volleyball Team (0-7) hosted a tri-match, as BC welcomed Guilford College (3-3) and Piedmont International University (4-3) to the Boshamer Gymnasium on Saturday.
Brevard matched up with the Bruins of Piedmont International for the first match, where PIU won a thrilling five-set match, 3-2, over the Tornados. The Bruins then faced Guilford in the middle match, which also went five sets long. Guilford, who was on the brink of defeat trailing 2-1 in the contest, battled back to defeat the Bruins in five sets. The tri-match was capped off with Brevard vs Guilford, as the Quakers swept the Tornados in straight sets. Total playing time for the action-packed tri-match was five hours and 37 minutes.
PIEDMONT INTERNATIONAL vs BREVARD
The opening contest saw the Tornados go to five sets for the second time this season. Sophomore Sydney Fox set a new career-high In kills (20) to boost the Tornados' attack. Freshman Breanna O'Shields matched her season-best 10 kills set just a day ago versus Salem College, as the pair of Tornado attackers combined for 30 of Brevard's 43 kills in the match.
Junior setter Hannah Gordon matched her season-high assist output, as the Brevard, N.C. native dished out 35 total assists.
Fox, Gordon, and O'Shields all produced double-double efforts in impressive individual showings.
In the first set, the Tornados struggled to establish their footing, as the Bruins controlled throughout for a 25-13 victory. After starting on a 5-0 run, the Bruins were tested by Brevard's efforts. The Tornados cut to within three points, trailing 11-8, before Piedmont International closed the set out on a 14-5 scoring run.
The Tornados jumped out early in the second set, as BC's early 6-3 advantage forced a Bruin timeout. In a set that featured two ties and three lead changes, the Tornados led by as many as eight points before PIU cut into the deficit. With Brevard on match point, the Bruins railed off three-straight scores to cut BC's lead to just one at 24-23. However, a Fox kill assisted by Gordon clinched the second set in favor of the Tornados.
For the second-straight set, the Tornados jumped to an early lead. Brevard led Piedmont International 20-12 before the Bruins stormed back, using an impressive 13-2 scoring run to come-from-behind and win what proved to be a crucial third set, 25-22.
A back-and-forth fourth set, which featured six ties and three lead changes, went in Brevard's favor. Leading 24-23, Rodriguez' service ace clinched the fourth set for the Tornados.
The fifth set stayed tight through the early goings, with the Bruins holding a slim 6-5 advantage early. However, a four-point run helped propel the Bruins to the match-clinching fifth-set victory, 15-9.
GUILFORD vs BREVARD
New faces made an impact for the Tornados in the second match of the day. Freshmen Julie McGahy and O'Shields each drove home six kills, while freshman Timiah McGhee recorded her first-career service ace.
Gordon (17 assists) and Rodriguez (13 digs) anchored the Tornados' passing and defensive efforts in the contest.
After the Quakers controlled sets one and two (25-13, 25-12), Brevard put together a spirited third set effort, battling back to tie the set late before eventually falling, 27-25.
The Tornados return to action next weekend for a tri-match in Misenheimer, N.C., hosted by fellow USA South Member Pfeiffer University. The Tornados face the host Falcons on Saturday, September 14 at 12 p.m. before taking on Toccoa Falls College in neutral-site action at 2 p.m.
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