BREVARD — The Newberry Wolves struggled offensively in the first set at Brevard on Tuesday night but quickly found their rhythm thereafter, earning a 3-1 (20-25, 25-19, 25-18, 25-16) victory in Boshamer Gymnasium.
With the win, Newberry moves to 8-2 on the season with a 3-2 South Atlantic Conference mark, while Brevard is now 3-6 overall and 0-5 in the league. Newberry travels to Hickory, N.C., on Friday for a 7 p.m. start at Lenoir-Rhyne in the Wolves’ only other match this week.
Alexus Horton had a great night for Newberry with a career-high nine kills on a .429 hitting percentage with a career-high seven blocks. Her performance was a big part of Newberry’s season high 14 blocks.
SAC Specialist of the Week Chelsea Mayor passed out 45 assists with Samantha Parrish and Jessica King as the primary beneficiaries. Parrish had another double-double with 13 kills, 12 digs and six blocks, while King hit .435 with 12 kills and was part of four blocks.
Elayni Stokes led the back row defense with 16 digs, while Lisa Ross had nine.
“Anytime you can win on the road in conference play, it’s a good thing,” said head coach Todd Hay. “We came out a little emotionally flat in the first set and had some mental lapses in key moments that cost us the set, but I felt that the team responded well and played better against an improved Brevard team.
“I’m really pleased with the way our middles and right side played tonight. We gave Holly Brisson the start tonight and she responded with seven kills and a .312 hitting percentage. Also, our middles have all played well recently as you can see in the statistics, but I thought Alexus Horton especially played well off of a rough weekend. Any time the right sides and middles hit the numbers they did tonight, you’re in pretty good shape.”
Quality service play and Newberry miscues helped give the Tornados the opening set, as the hosts notched three aces and held Newberry to a .029 hitting percentage. King still had four kills and only one error in the set.
“They were hitting some deep driving serves early that gave us trouble, but we made good adjustments for the rest of the match,” Hay said.
In the second set, Newberry put up five blocks and hit at a .296 clip to even up the match at a set apiece. Horton had five kills and three blocks in the set, while Brisson and Parrish each had three kills.
The third set saw the hitting rate drop slightly to .200, but the Wolves’ defense limited Brevard to .000 hitting with eight errors. Brisson had a perfect set with three kills on three attempts, while the Wolves threw up the wall three times.
In the final set, Newberry hit a sparkling .394 with five errorless kills from King. Parrish and Ross each had five digs, while Amanda Soper came in off the bench at outside hitter and had three kills, three digs and a block in the set.