BRIDGEWATER, Va. – Despite a double-double effort from Mara Hogan and a 12-kill night from Katie Long, the Bridgewater Eagles women's volleyball team stormed out to a one-game lead but couldn't hold off a feisty Lynchburg Hornets squad en route a 3-1 loss in the home opener.
Bridgewater was victorious in game one by a 25-21 score before Lynchburg won three straight sets by 25-21, 25-15 and 25-19 scores.
In the game's first set, both teams battled each other tooth and nail before the Eagles gained an 11-8 lead off of a Lynchburg attack error, forcing a Hornets timeout.
Out of the timeout, Lynchburg knotted the game twice before taking the lead at a 16-14 margin.
Bridgewater quickly stormed back off of a Long kill and two service points from senior Katie Baker to regain the lead at a 17-16 tally.
The two teams battled to a 20 all tie before Bridgewater ripped off five of the next six points to take the first set by a 25-21 score.
Early in the second set the two teams traded points back and forth before a 5-2 Lynchburg stretch gave the Hornets a slight cushion at a 14-11 score midway through set two. Again, the Eagles stormed back to take an 18-17 lead as the set entered the final stretch. Three straight Lynchburg kills gave the Hornets the lead back one which would never relinquish as they eventually tied the match up at one set each with a 25-22 win.
Lynchburg controlled play in the third set, en route to a 25-15 victory and a two sets to one lead and looked like they were going to quickly roll through game four to an easy victory.
With the Eagles trailing by a 10-3 gap, an attack error by the Hornets gave the serve back to Bridgewater where Hogan rattled off four straight service points to claw the Eagles to within a 10-8 tally.
Lynchburg stretched the lead back out to three at a 13-10 margin, before the Eagles used a 3-0 run behind the service of Lindsay Kallam to knot the set up at 13 apiece.
The two teams traded points until a five-point spurt from the Hornets put the visitors in the lead for good, propelling Lynchburg to a 3-1 win.
Three Lynchburg players tallied double-digit kills, led by Aricquel Payne's 17 kill, 15 dig double-double. Rebecca Loftis was also solid, pitching in 16 kills while Rachel Huffman hit at a gaudy .500 clip with 13 kills on the evening. Brooke Moughton dished out a team-high 29 assists in the win.
Lynchburg turned in a .329 attack percentage as a team, while the Eagles hit at a moderate .222 clip.
Long and Hogan led the Eagles offense with a dozen kills each, while Hogan led the Eagles with 16 digs. Kallam doled out a team-high 33 assists on the evening. Bridgewater's defense also turned in six blocks for the game.
The Eagles are back in action tomorrow, Saturday, when they host Randolph College. Action is slated for a 2:00 p.m. start.