WILMORE, Ky. – Kayla Briley had 30 assists and 10 digs, while Autumn Snider added 11 kills to lead the University of Rio Grande past Asbury University 25-21, 25-18, 28-26, Monday night, in Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference volleyball action.
Rio Grande improved to 20-7 overall and 6-4 in league play with the win. The 20-win season is the RedStorm’s first since finishing 21-10 in 2012 – the third of three straight 20-win campaigns.
Asbury, which dropped to 19-11 overall, suffered just its second setback in nine KIAC matches.
Rio Grande trailed 7-1 in the opening set, but ran off nine of the next 11 points to take a 10-9 lead and never trailed again.
The Eagles did tie the set at both 10-10 and 12-12 but never got the lead back as Snider and Briley – both juniors from Marion, Ohio – sealed the opening stanza win with consecutive kills.
Asbury led 6-5 early in set two, but Rio scored six of the next seven points to grab an 11-7 advantage and never trailed again.
The final set was a bit more of a see-saw affair and featured 24 of the match’s 39 ties.
Rio Grande faced set point on three different occasions, including 26-25, but tied the game on a kill by sophomore Madison Wilson (Groveport, OH) and closed out the match following consecutive attack errors by the Eagles.
Junior Chandler Brown (Stockdale, OH) and freshman Trista Lackey (Jacksonville, OH) added 11 digs each in the winning effort for Rio, which lost both of its matchups with Asbury last season.
Kayla Moran had a match-best 12 kills in the loss for the Eagles, while Rachel Miller and Hannah Truax added 18 and 15 assists, respectively. Carly Butler had 29 digs for AU, while Kellianne Crouse finished with 13 of her own.
Rio Grande returns to action on Thursday night, traveling to Pittsburgh, Pa. for a showdown with Point Park University. First serve is set for 7 p.m.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.