WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Salisbury University volleyball team opened play in the Worthington Classic hosted by Gallaudet University on Friday, earning a pair of 3-0 wins over Misericordia University and the host Bison.
Match 1: Salisbury 3, Misericordia 0
The Sea Gulls claimed the opening-match victory without allowing the Cougars to reach 20 points in any of the three sets, claiming the win 25-16, 25-19, 25-15.
Salisbury began the match with a 10-2 run, sparked by three kills from senior Katie Stouffer and a service ace from Shannon Russell. Stouffer had four kills in the opening set and led the team with 13 in the match as the Sea Gulls hit .391 in the opening set and the Cougars never got back within three.
Russell, who led the team with five aces in the match, had another in the early moments of the second set, while Stouffer had three kills and Gianna Savarese had one during a 6-1 run to open the set and the team never surrendered that advantage.
It was two more Russell aces that set off an early run in the third set as the lead changed hands only once in the deciding set. Russell had a team-best 14 digs in the match to go with her five aces, while Sydney Davis added six kills on 12 swings and four block assists with Rachel Dubbs dishing out 25 assists.
Match 2: Salisbury 3, Gallaudet 0
The first set of the nightcap was the closest of the day for the Sea Gulls who saw 14 ties with Gallaudet and four lead changes before Salisbury took a 25-20 win. The Sea Gulls claimed the next two sets in increasingly impressive fashion, 25-17 and 25-14, to finish off the match.
The opening set was either tied or saw a one-point spread until a Stouffer kill gave the Sea Gulls an 11-9 lead. Four more ties followed, but a pair of Nicole Venturelli kills down the stretch gave Salisbury the 1-0 lead.
Venturelli had a dozen kills in the match including five in the second set as the Sea Gulls came from 7-4 down with a 9-2 run. Venturelli had three kills during the run while Stouffer and Savarese each had a pair. Salisbury would trail once more in the set, but an 11-2 Sea Gull run closed the set.
The Bison took an early lead in the third set, but the Sea Gulls rallied to collect their fifth 3-0 win of the year. A 9-2 spurt, with two kills and a block assist from Samantha Chubb, set the Sea Gulls up to close out the match in three sets.
Stouffer notched 14 kills with Dubbs putting up 33 assists and Russell collecting 17 digs. Davis again led the defensive effort at the net, with three solo blocks and one block assist.
The Sea Gulls close out tournament play on Saturday, taking on Rutgers University-Newark at 10 a.m., and Messiah College at 4 p.m., in the final tune-ups before beginning Capital Athletic Conference play later this week.