SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University volleyball team picked up its first home victory of the 2015 season, defeating Virginia Wesleyan College 3-0 (25-23, 26-24, 25-15) on Tuesday night at Maggs Physical Activities Center.
Two kills from junior Katie Stouffer and a service ace from junior Shannon Russell got the Sea Gulls off on the right foot, leading a 4-1 opening spurt in the first set. Before the match, Stouffer was honored for tallying her 1,000th kill on Saturday, and after leading the team with 18 on the night, she is now only 22 from tying Lindsay Lawson for ninth all-time in program history.
Stouffer notched two more kills, before freshman Nicole Venturelli put down her first to push the Salisbury lead to 7-5.
However, the Marlins fought back and with two-straight service aces from Rosalind Ludovici, and took their first lead of the match 8-7.
Virginia Wesleyan continued to hold the lead for the majority of the first set, but trailing 21-18, Stouffer tallied two more kills, sandwiching a block by sophomore Rachel Pierson, to bring the score even, 21-21.
The teams traded points to 23-23, before two Marlin errors gave Salisbury the 1-0 lead in the match.
The Marlins opened the second set on a 3-1 run, but a kill from Stouffer and a service ace and kill from Pierson helped Salisbury flip the score in the Gulls' favor at 6-4.
Salisbury and Virginia Wesleyan continued to trade leads six more times in the set, which would take extra points to decide.
A Venturelli kill and a Stouffer and sophomore Sydney Davis block gave Salisbury back the lead at 10-9.
The Marlins regained the advantage at 13-12 and held it until the score was 19-17, before a 4-0 swing for Salisbury took back the edge at 21-19. Two kills from Stouffer and a Davis service ace powered the run for Salisbury.
The team again battled closely through the opening points of the third set, but with a slight 11-10 lead, Stouffer notched a kill to spark a 14-5 run that would close the match for Salisbury.
Lawson and Chubb paired for another block, and Venturelli, Stouffer, and Davis each hit two kills in the stretch, before Chubb and Pierson combined for a block to bring the Gulls to within one point of their victory. A Marlin error gave Salisbury its seventh three-set sweep of the season.
Venturelli and Davis added to the offense with 11 and seven kills, respectively, while Pierson led the team with 34 assists and 12 digs.
Salisbury now looks forward to its final weekend tournament of the season, traveling to Hunter College on Friday. The Sea Gulls match up with Sarah Lawrence College on September 25 for their first match, beginning at 6 p.m.