MARYVILLE, Tenn. – The Hanover volleyball team rallied for an opening weekend split as part of the Maryville College Invitational on Friday afternoon. The Panthers played a pair of five set thrillers dropping their opening match with Washington and Lee (25-27, 25-21, 22-25, 25-22, 5-15) before defeating Maryville in the night cap (24-26, 25-21, 14-25, 25-16, 15-11).
The Panthers (1-1 overall) were led on the day by senior Carlie Burson (Corydon, Ind.) with 25 kills over the two matches.
MATCH ONE (vs. Washington and Lee)
The opening set was a toss-up from the first serve as both teams exchanged points for several minutes before the Panthers used a five-point rally led by sophomore Kelsey Ketcham (Mishawaka, Ind.), with back-to-back service aces, to claim the 12-9 advantage. The Blue and Red continued on the attack as freshman Emma Harmon (Carmel, Ind.) hammered home a kill that led to the team's largest lead, 14-10. However, the Generals remained poise as they rallied back to tie the set at 21-21. Washington and Lee would go on to claim the set, 27-25.
In set two, the Blue and Red found themselves trailing 4-0 early before a kill by Harmon and a pair of Washington and Lee miscues pulled the Panthers within 6-4. Hanover continued to chip away at the lead using a five-point rally to capture the 17-15 advantage. Sophomore Maddie Edwards (Jasper, Ind.) would find success at the net as she registered a kill that sparked a three-point rally and surged the Panthers ahead 21-17. Hanover never looked back as they were able to combat the Generals and hold on for the 25-21 victory.
Hanover once again found themselves in a thriller as they entered a set four must win situation after dropping set three, 25-22. The Panthers pounced early in set four taking the 5-0 lead following a kill by Burson. The Blue and Red capitalized on a pair of General miscues to extend their advantage, 16-12. Junior Emily Diehr (Greenfield, Ind.) would go on to seal the must win set for the Panthers as she connected with Ketcham for the win, 25-22.
Washington and Lee deemed too much in the final set as they were able to rally and defeat the Panthers 15-5 to claim the season opening victory.
MATCH TWO (vs. Maryville)
Hanover found themselves in a one set deficit early but wasted little time getting even. The Panthers dominated much of set two as they pulled ahead off a kill by sophomore Emma Rolf (Lebanon, Ind.), 6-2. The Blue and Red carried the momentum throughout the set as they rattled off four straight points claiming their largest lead, 21-14. Rolf would deem clutch again as she connected with Ketcham for the sets final point, 25-21.
The Scots responded in set three using a series of runs to regain the 2-1 set advantage. However, Hanover responded using an eight point rally, led by Burson, to jump ahead 9-2. Maryville looked to respond but fell short as a series of miscues secured the set four victory.
The Panthers no strangers to the set five pressure pounced early taking the 4-1 advantage. Diehr deemed clutch for the Blue and Red late into the set as she landed a pair of kills that sealed the match two victory.
Hanover returns to action on Saturday, August 31 as they take on Huntingdon as part of the Maryville College Invitational. First serve is scheduled for 12:15 pm.