RALEIGH, NC (October 3, 2022) – After taking back-to-back losses for the first time this season, the Claflin Lady Panthers (8-3, 3-3 CIAA) returned to the winner’s circle with four-set win over the Saint Augustine’s Falcons (2-5, 2-5 CIAA), Monday evening. The Lady Panthers broke out a powerful offensive attack to get back to their winning ways.
While the Lady Panthers offense took the headline, it was a dynamic and balanced effort that led the Lady Panthers to the victory. As a team, the Lady Panthers totaled 41 kills in the match. The team’s total was the second highest of the season. It was senior outside hitter Simone Newell who led the way for the Lady Panthers when she recorded a double-double with 13 kills and 10 digs in the match. Senior middle hitter Mya Broom added nine kills of her own. Defensively, it was senior defensive specialist Ayanna Harrison who led the way with 18 digs. She and Newell were just two of four Lady Panthers to reach double-digit digs in the match as freshman setter Siri Davis and junior outside hitter Danelle Branch both added 10 digs each as well.
The Lady Panthers got the match started on a high note with two dominating wins in the first two sets. Claflin opened the match with a 25-15 win in the first set and followed it with a 25-14 win in the second set. The team was especially dominant as a Broom kill capped a 7-1 run and gave the Lady Panthers a 23-10 lead before the team sealed the 25-15 opening set win. The domination continued in the second set as the Lady Panthers closed the set with four straight points to seal the 25-14 win.
Things got a bit challenging in the final two sets, but the Lady Panthers prevailed and secured the win. In the third set, the Lady Panthers were reminded that there are no easy matches in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA). The team took a 19-25 loss in the set, but the loss didn’t come without a fight. The Lady Panthers would jump out to a 6-2 lead, but soon found their lead gone and stood tied, 17-17, before taking the 19-25 third set loss. In the fourth and final set, the Lady Panthers responded in a major way. The team wasted little time in taking control of the set with a 9-1 start. From there, the Lady Panthers went ahead by as many as 16 points, 21-5, after a block from junior Kyndall Perry and freshman Kaitlin Ham. From there, the Lady Panthers cruised to the 25-11 set win and sealed the four-set match victory.
With the win, the Lady Panthers improve to 8-3 overall and 3-3 in CIAA play. The team will return home for their next action when they host the Clinton Golden Bears, Wednesday evening. For more information on Lady Panthers volleyball, contact the Claflin University Office of Athletics Media Relations at (803) 535-5548 or log on to www.athletics.claflin.edu.