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Panther Comeback Falls Just Short in 5-set Thriller

Panthers Fall Just Short In 5-set Thriller
Panthers Fall Just Short In 5-set Thriller

FERRUM, Va. -- Ferrum College dropped its volleyball home opener, 3-2, to Johnson and Wales (N.C.) University in a packed Swartz Gymnasium tonight at Swartz Gym.

Johnson and Wales def. Ferrum 25-16, 25-19, 21-25, 24-26, 15-13

Ferrum (0-3)
Johnson and Wales (5-1)

The Panthers fell behind two sets to nothing early, but fought back to force a fifth set. Cassidy Burke and Layura Henley came up with a huge block assist to close out the third set and keep the Panthers alive.

Ferrum then trailed 24-21 in the fourth set, but again came alive to rally off five straight points, led by Arielle Tritt's services, to move into a decisive fifth set. In the end, the Panthers ran out of gas, but the electric crowd in Swartz Gym did not leave empty-handed.

Halee Bly led the Panther attack, tallying a career-high 18 kills, with Molly Patterson notching 14 of her own. The two-setter system saw 20 assists from Ashley Roberts and 18 from Arielle Tritt. Morgan McCoy headed the back line for Ferrum, recording 17 digs, as Kayla Divers was not far behind with 14.

"Tonight's loss was a really tough one to swallow, but our team showed a ton of heart. We were able to fight back after being 0-2 and for our third match of the season. A five set match like this shows the potential of what our team is capable of, especially when playing a team already five or six matches into their season. We obviously have a lot of work to do, but I believe we are going to get there as long as we continue to work." -- Head Coach Ruthanne Duffy

Duffy's squad will be back on the court Friday and Saturday, Sept. 6-7, in the Maroon Classic at Roanoke College. Ferrum is slated to play at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Friday afternoon, and back again at 11 a.m. Saturday morning.