CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – The Chattanooga Mocs (0-5) volleyball team dropped its fifth match of the season Friday night with a 3-2 loss to Charlotte (2-3) on the second night of the Country Inns & Suites Invitational at Maclellan Gym.
“This isn’t exactly where we want to be because we aren’t winning, but we came out with the right mindset,” Head Coach Travis Filar said after the loss. “I think we embraced the opportunity, though. I thought we played well, didn’t make many errors and I liked how our kids battled.”
Chattanooga took command of the match early with a 27-25 win in the first set. Forcing the frame to extra points after trailing by as many as six points for most of the match, the Mocs strung together back-to-back four-point rallies to take a 25-24 while they were on the ropes. Charlotte tied the set at 25 but a kill from freshman Allie Davenport (Tyrone, Ga.) gave UTC the lead and an attacking error handed them the win.
Davenport took 65 swings Friday night, nearly double the amount of her-closest teammate Julimar Alvarado (San Juan, Puerto Rico) with 38, and led the team with 21 kills. The freshman was also responsible for 12 digs and three blocks, en route to her second double-double of the season.
“Allie played great tonight,” Filar said. She played six rotations, was a primary passer and that added up to a big match for her.”
The Mocs handled the 49ers with a little more ease in the second frame, winning 25-21 to take a 2-0 lead in the match. Battling from behind yet again, three rallies worth four points each boosted the Mocs into the lead midway through the set, giving UTC a 15-12 lead. Charlotte challenged late, but spikes downed by freshman Kendall Sexton (Orlando, Fla.) landed in 49ers’ territory with aggression to swart any chances of a comeback.
“Kendall has really stepped for us when we needed her,” Filar said. “She is getting better with every single rotation. She showed a lot of toughness and she has taken that extra step that it takes to become a college athlete.”
Chattanooga’s luck ran out in the third, however, falling 25-19 in another closely played set. The Mocs would only tack on one more point to their total in the fourth with a 25-20 loss before a 15-8 final in the deciding set handed UTC its fifth loss, dropping Filar’s squad to 0-5 on the season.
The Country Inns & Suites Invitation continues tomorrow at 10 a.m. with UT Martin taking on Tennessee. Chattanooga’s next match is set for 2 p.m. as the Mocs take on UT Martin’s Skyhawks before wrapping up the five-match weekend at 8 p.m. against UNC Asheville.