ASHLAND, Va. — Senior outside hitter Meg Guignon (St. Louis, Mo./Visitation Academy) and junior outside hitter Allison Webb (Thousand Oaks, Calif./Westlake) each totaled 19 kills to lead the second-seeded Washington and Lee volleyball team to a 3-2 victory at top-seeded Randolph-Macon on Saturday, securing the 2018 ODAC Championship for the Blue and White.
The title is the 16th league championship in program history, and the Generals (21-12) also earned the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
W&L held a 2-1 lead in the contest after winning the third set, 25-20. It appeared the Generals might take the match in four, as it led 13-9 midway through the fourth, but the Yellow Jackets (20-11) had other ideas, as they went on an 11-4 spurt to grab a 20-17 advantage in the set.
A kill by sophomore outside hitter Brynne Gould (Boone, N.C./Watauga) pulled the Blue and White back to within two (20-18), but R-MC tallied five of the final seven points in the stanza to take the fourth, 25-20.
The teams were tied, 2-2, in the final set, but a kill by Guignon and back-to-back serves aces by sophomore middle blocker Kiera Borthwick (Northville, Mich./Northville) gave the Generals a 5-2 advantage. A kill by senior middle hitter Emily Fitzwater slowed the W&L momentum for an instant, but then two more kills from Guignon extended the lead to four, 7-3.
After a service error by the Blue and White trimmed the deficit to 7-4, a kill by junior outside hitter Ashleigh Meade (Bristow, Va./Patriot) and a combination block from sophomore middle blocker Courtney Berry (Charlottesville, Va./Western Albemarle) and Gould gave the Generals a 9-4 advantage.
Holding an 11-7 lead later in the set, W&L gave itself an opportunity for match point (14-7) following two straight attack errors by Randolph-Macon and a kill by Borthwick. The Yellow Jackets delayed the victory for one point on a kill by junior outside hitter Miranda Hall. During the next rally, Hall attacked from the left side, but her attempt sailed wide right, and the Blue and White won the set, 15-8, the match, 3-2, and the ODAC title.
W&L took a 1-0 lead in the match by winning the first set, 25-18. R-MC evened the contest by claiming the second, 25-17.
Webb totaled a .350 hitting percentage to reach her 19 kills, and chipped in four blocks and five digs. Guignon hit .312 on her 19 kills and had 14 digs and two aces. Junior setter Anna Soroka (Mechanicsville, Va./Lee-Davis) tallied a match-high 50 assists to go with three blocks and 10 digs.
Gould also reached double-digit kills with 11, and senior outside hitter Elly Cosgrove (Wilmington, N.C./John T. Hoggard) finished the contest with a match-high 27 digs. With the 27 digs, she pushed her single-season total to 541, and is now second on the W&L single-season list. Lauren Edmonson '07 holds the single-season mark with 662 in 2006.
Berry recorded seven kills and four blocks, and Borthwick was all over the stat sheet with three kills, seven blocks, four aces and six digs.
Hall led Randolph-Macon with 19 kills, while junior outside hitter Alexia Wolfe registered 10 kills and 16 digs.
Following the conclusion of the match, Guignon, Soroka and Webb were named to the ODAC All-Tournament Team. This is the first conference title for the Blue and White since claiming the 2014 championship.
The Generals will find out who and where they will play in the NCAA Tournament on Monday, November 5. The NCAA selection show will air at 12:30 pm at NCAA.com.
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