Match 1: Texas Tech
On Friday afternoon, the Terps (9-0) opened the Dickmann Invitational with a 3-1 (25-20, 14-25, 25-22, 25,16) victory over a Texas Tech team (6-2) that had only lost one game all season.
The set got off to a quick start, with Liz Twilley tallying four kills for the Terps within their first ten points. Twilley, who finished the match with a team-high 16 kills, was the driving force behind the Terps success all afternoon. It was Meghan Stacy who kept the Red Raiders in the set early on, matching Twilley's four early kills to close the Terps lead to 10-9.
The majority of the first set was back and forth action, with the Terps largest lead of the set being the final score: 25-20. The turning point in the set was the Terps' 19th point when libero Amy Dion served an ace. From that point on, the Terps held the lead and the Red Raiders never came within two points.
The second set was a dominant effort for the Red Raiders, sparked by a 12-3 run which turned a 3-3 score into a 15-6 score in a hurry. The Raiders never looked back, dominating the remainder of the set, winning by a score of 25-14.
The Raiders were once again led by Stacy, who totaled seven kills out of the twenty-five points. For the Terps, it was a balanced attack, with Twilley and Adreene` Elliot each notching two kills, and Katy Keenan, Ashlyn MacGregor, Kelsey Hrebenach, and Emily Fraik adding a kill a piece.
Steve Aird's Terps responded nicely in the third set, topping Texas Tech in a nail biter, 25-22. The match was a back and forth contest early on, with the two teams even at seven points each. The Terps turned it around from there, stealing four points in a row. The Raiders were able to close in on the Terps and come within a point of the lead but back-to-back kills by MacGregor and Hailey Murray, combined with two services aces by Dion, propelled the Terps to a victory, and a set away from winning the match.
The Terps closed out the match in the fourth set after falling behind early on 4-0. Maryland came back to tie the match at four. Kills from Elliott, Fraik, and Hrebenach pushed the Terps and gave them a lead that they never relinquished.
An ace from MacGregor made the score 22-16, and that was all she wrote. The Terps grabbed the next three points, winning the set, and the match.
KEY STATS: Freshmen Liz Twilley and Abigail Bentz led the way for the Terps, with Twilley totaling 16 kills, and Bentz adding 24 assists. Libero Amy Dion served three aces, and also notched 19 digs.
Match 2: George Washington
The Maryland Terrapins' quest to achieve a perfect 10-0 record to begin the season fell short on Saturday afternoon as they dropped their first match of the season to George Washington (6-3) by a final score of 3-1.
The Terps started off on the right foot by taking the first set by a score of 25-18. It was a tight affair early on, with the Terps racking up points on various unforced errors by the Colonials. The Terps would take advantage, combining the Colonials mistakes with some dominating play of their own. A well-balanced attack from the Terps heavy hitters allowed the team to extend its lead to as many as seven points, when a George Washington attack error extended the lead to 18-11.
The Colonials were able to close the lead to 22-18 late in the set, but the Terps rallied behind a kill from Elliott to capture a 25-18 victory.
As it was on Friday, the second set was a problem for the Terps. They were unable to carry the momentum they gained from the first game. The Terps dropped the set 25-20, despite leading early on.
The Terps dominated the first portion of the set behind a couple of kills from Adrene Elliott and Emily Fraik. The last time Maryland led was when the score was 7-5. The Colonials scored four straight points from that point, and never looked back. The lead was cut to one multiple times, and the Terps were able to tie the score at 13. But the Terps efforts were never enough to regain the lead, as the Colonials rallied to put together five straight points, making the score 18-13.
The teams played even volleyball the rest of the way, each grabbing seven points, but the Terps would drop the set, and look to regain the lead in the third set.
The third set looked promising for the Terps. They opened with a 6-0 lead and extended it to 10-3 early in the match behind strong play by Emily Fraik, Liz Twilley, and Ashlyn MacGregor. The dominant play would not last as the Colonials were able to muster a comeback and ultimately win the set, 26-24.
Despite the late set collapse, the Terps dominated throughout, holding a lead until the score was tied at 22 points a piece. The Colonials received a kill from Loren Williams to grab a 25-24 lead and then took the set on an attack error from Hailey Murray, taking a 2-1 lead in the match
Play was even early in the fourth set, with frequent service errors from both teams resulting in the score being tied six times to begin. It was George Washington who reached seven points first and seemed to roll forward from there. The Terps never regained even a share of the lead.
Maryland was able to sneak within one point of the lead late in the set when an Adreene` Elliott kill made the score 18-17. The Colonials responded by scoring the next four points and put the Terps away by a final score of 25-21.
Although the Terps were unable to win ten matches in a row, they would need to bounce back later that afternoon as would face a struggling Navy team to close out the Kristen Dickmann Invitational.
KEY STATS: Liz Twilley: 14 kills, Abby Bentz: 47 assists, Amy Dion: 13 digs, Emily Fraik: 3 blocks, Ashlyn MacGregor and Abby Bentz: 1 ace.
Match 3: Navy
The Terps came out firing on all cylinders with key defensive blocks and multiple kills from various players. There was not much the Navy Midshipmen could do to stop the Terps early on, as Maryland built a 8-2 lead. The lead swelled to 19-8 and the Terps would cruise to victory in the first set, winning 25-12.
The score was 5-0 before you could blink in the second set. Maryland never let up, keeping their lead at no less than four points for the rest of the set. They dominated the second set and won 25-18. The Terps seemed set to sail past Navy and cruise to their tenth victory.
Things never seemed to get going for the Terps in the third set and the hopes of a clean sweep en route to a win faded. Navy controlled the set from the opening serve; taking a 4-3 lead early and never tripping up from there. The lead grew to as many as six points with every Maryland push sparking a Navy answer.
Although the Terps closed the lead to three points (20-17) late in the set, the Midshipmen had a response and the Terps lost by four, 25-21.
The fourth set had been favorable to the Terps, as they had won both matches earlier in the weekend in the fourth set. However, the momentum of the Midshipmen was in their sails and they were able to match the Terps intensity early in the set.
The teams traded haymakers early and often, with the score bouncing back and forth through twelve points each. The Terps had an answer for every Navy point, tying the game over and over again. Navy scored what truly is unlucky number 13 and took care of the set from there.
Maryland cut the Navy lead to 21-20 but it wasn't enough as Navy took care of things from there, winning by a score of 25-22, taking consecutive sets to tie the match at two games a piece.
A desperate Terps team entered the fifth and final set with one number on their mind: 15. Because the match went to its maximum five sets, the first team to reach fifteen points and win by two would win the match.
The score was 2-2 when the Terps took over and found the stroke they had lost in the middle portion of the match. The calm, cool, and collected group never lost the lead after going ahead 3-2. Maryland cruised to a 15-11 win in the fifth set, sealing a 2-1 record on the weekend and an impressive 10-1 record on the season.
KEY STATS: Adreene Elliott: 18 kills, Abby Bentz: 44 assists, Emily Fraik: 4 blocks, Amy Dion: 16 digs, Kelsey Wicinski: 2 aces.