ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Ashley Warren (Jr., Pennington, N.J.) recorded eight of her career-high 19 kills in the last two sets of a five-set victory for the Navy volleyball team (5-7, 2-1) over Loyola (3-8, 1-3), Saturday at the Wesley A. Brown Field House in Annapolis. The Mids defeated the Greyhounds, 25-22, 16-25, 26-28, 25-16, 15-11, in a match that lasted one minute short of two and one-half hours.
Four of the last six matches between the teams have been extended into five sets.
“I couldn’t be more proud of the effort and resilience of this team today,” said Navy head coach Paco Labrador. “Each player leveled up in sets four and five. That level makes us a tough team.”
Navy slowly built just enough of a separation midway through the set. The Mids led by one point at 13-12 before a 3-0 run gave them a 16-12 lead. The margin grew to as many as five points at 18-13, but never shrunk below three points until it was 24-22. A Loyola service error on Navy’s fourth set point gave the frame to the Mids.
Loyola quickly jumped out to a 4-0 lead and eventually led by a score of 10-4. Navy was able to winnow the margin down to one point at 11-10, but a 7-0 run by the Greyhounds put the set away.
Loyola hit just .161 in the set, but held Navy to a (-).097 hitting percentage.
The set would be tied 13 times, but there was only one lead change and that came when Loyola took an 11-10 lead. The Greyhounds soon took a four-point lead at 18-14 and still were in front by three points at 21-18. The Mids were able to tie the score at 21-21, then the teams exchanged 11 sideouts, which made the score 27-26 in favor of Loyola. The Greyhounds notched a kill on their fourth opportunity to serve for the set.
Loyola recorded 20 kills in the third set and limited Navy to 12 kills. The Mids battled to the end thanks to a 3-1 lead in blocks, committing just one service error to five for the Greyhounds and tallying the set’s only service ace.
Navy turned a 10-9 lead into advantages of 16-10 and 19-11 as it was able to extend the match to a fifth set.
Warren recorded five kills against just one attack error on 10 attempts in the set to help the Mids to a .423-(-).036 hitting percentage advantage.
Warren opened the set with a kill as Navy took a 4-1 lead. Navy held an 8-6 lead when the teams traded benches, but Loyola quickly rattled off the next three points to take a 9-8 lead. Jordan Llewellyn (Jr., Port Deposit, Md.) tied the set at 9-9 with a kill. Her twin sister, Jamie Llewellyn (Jr., Port Deposit), broke the tie with a kill. Warren and Anna Klemeyer (Jr., Sarasota, Fla.) then combined for a block to stretch the lead to 11-9 and result in a Loyola timeout.
The next point ended when the intended Loyola hitter slipped on the court and never was able to get a swing on the ball before it fell to the ground. That made the score 12-9. Jordan Llewellyn was called for a service error on her next offering, but Labrador challenged the call and after looking at the replay the call was reversed. Her ace gave the Mids a 13-9 lead. A Loyola kill stopped the 5-0 Navy run, but Warren dropped in her 19th kill to take the Mids to match point. The Greyhounds extended the match with a kill, then Jordan Llewellyn’s seventh kill of the match closed out play.
Warren and Jordan Llewellyn each had three kills and combined for just one error on 15 attempts in the final set.
Loyola held a 58-56 advantage in kills, but the Greyhounds committed 30 attack errors to 23 for Navy. The Mids also doubled the number of Loyola aces, 6-3, and held an 11-5 edge in blocks.
Warren, who bettered her previous career high for kills of 14, recorded 19 kills and just three attack errors on 41 attempts for a .390 hitting percentage. She also added a career-high five blocks.
“Ashley did a great job of scoring in a variety of ways and taking some really clutch swings,” said Labrador. “She set the tone for our offense tonight.”
Maggie Bodman (Jr., Northbrook, Illl.) and Jamie Llewellyn each posted 11 kills, with Bodman adding six blocks and Llewellyn contributing 12 digs. Additionally, Klemeyer had a hand in four blocks, Hannah Hoover (So., Katy, Texas) had 18 digs and three aces and Jordan Llewellyn accrued 15 digs, seven digs and two aces. Setter Averi Miller (Jr., Phoenix, Ariz.) dished out 45 assists and added three kills.
“Averi was connecting well with Maggie, spreading out our offense and stretching the Loyola defense,” said Labrador. “The crowd really helped us push ahead in the fifth set. It’s always great to see so many Mids and community members cheering us on.”