BRIDGEWATER, Va. - Bridgewater College rallied from a 2-1 deficit Saturday afternoon to defeat Randolph College, 3-2, in ODAC volleyball action. The Eagles won by scores of 25-20, 11-25, 24-26, 25-13, 15-7.
In the opening game, the teams traded points early with neither team able to pull away. With the score tied at 16-16, the Eagles finally forged ahead with six straight points. Randolph lost its hitting touch during the 6-0 spurt as four hitting errors along with a kill by the Eagles' Katie Baker (Strasburg, Va./Strasburg) allowed BC to open up a 22-16 lead. Katie Long (Floyd, Va./Floyd County) finished off the first game with a kill for a final 25-20 win in Game 1.
Slow starts plagued the Eagles in the next two games.
Randolph jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the second game and the Eagles never fully recovered. The Eagles closed to within two points, 10-8, on a service ace by Casey O'Leary (Quinton, Va./New Kent), but the WildCats outscored Bridgewater 15-3 the rest of the way to even the match with a 25-11 win.
In Game 3, another quick start propelled the Wildcats to an 8-2 lead. This time the Eagles were able to battle all the way back as they tied the score at 21-21 on a kill by Long.
Bridgewater led 23-22 on a kill by Cadie Castle (Mineral, Va./Louisa) but Randolph responded and kills by Shana Nelson and Megan Wheatley closed out the Wildcats' 26-24 victory in the third game.
The Eagles never trailed in Game 4, but the WildCats stayed within striking distance early. A kill by Bridgewater's Mara Hogan (Bridgewater, Va./Turner Ashby) sparked a 4-0 flurry that turned an 11-9 lead into a 15-9 advantage. The Eagles then pulled away and evened the match with a 25-13 win.
The deciding fifth game was tied 5-5 before the Eagles took control with a 7-0 spurt. A hitting error by the Wildcats was followed by an ace from O'Leary and two kills by Long to give the Eagles a 9-5 lead. Another O'Leary ace and kills by Castle and Lindsay Kallam (Virginia Beach, Va./Princess Anne) put the Eagles on top 12-5. A kill by Hogan put the finishing touches on the victory as the Eagles took the match with a 15-7 win in the final game.
The Eagles offense came alive in the final two games with a hitting percentage of .385 in Game 4 followed by a .455 percentage in the final game.
Hogan and Long each finished with 12 kills to lead the Bridgewater offense. Castle finished with 10 kills while Baker added nine kills and a team-high six blocks. O'Leary led the team in digs with 16 and aces with seven while Kallam dished out 23 assists.
With the victory, the Eagles improve to 7-3 overall and 1-1 in the ODAC. Randolph is now 6-4 overall and 1-2 in the conference.
The Eagles hit the road Tuesday for a conference game at Washington and Lee.