NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The Salisbury University volleyball team fell on Saturday afternoon in the Capital Athletic Conference championship game in three sets (25-16, 25-22, 25-23) at the Freeman Center.
It marked the fifth-straight CAC title match appearance for the Sea Gulls, including the third-straight against the Captains.
The Captains took control from there with a 13-3 run to build their lead into double digits.
Trailing 20-10, Davis put down a kill to begin a 6-3 run for Salisbury in a comeback attempt to get the deficit down to 23-16. Junior Shannon Russell tallied three kills in the stretch; she led the Sea Gulls with 13 kills in the match, along with nine digs.
However, CNU closed out the first set on a kill from Maddie McCann.
The Captains took the initial lead again in the second set, but Stouffer put down a kill to spark an 8-4 run to take the Gulls' first lead of the match. Junior Jordan Lawson hit two kills in the spurt, as the Gulls took the 10-9 edge.
The teams played it even from there, as sophomore Samantha Chubb and Russell notched four more kills, each, before Stouffer added another to take a two-point lead, 21-19.
CNU was able end the set on a 6-1 run to take the 2-0 lead in the match.
Chubb put down a kill for the first point of the third set, before the Captains jumped out to a 6-3 lead.
A service ace from sophomore Rachel Pierson allowed the Gulls to tie the set 6-6, before a kill by Russell and block by Lawson and Davis gained the lead for Salisbury 11-9.
Russell added another kill to get the lead to 14-12, but a 6-1 run by the Captains flipped the score in CNU's favor to 18-15. However, two-straight Stouffer kills cut the Gulls' deficit back to one, as they would not go down easy.
Two more Russell kills, followed by a block by Lawson and Chubb gained one more lead for Salisbury at 23-22, but the Captains answered with a 3-0 run to close the match.
Stouffer finished with nine kills in the match, while Davis led the way with four blocks. Pierson handled the setting with 31 assists.
The Sea Gulls now await the NCAA tournament selection show on Monday, November 9 for a possible at-large bid to the NCAA Division III tournament; the show is set for 11 a.m.