ORANGEBURG, SC – The Winston-Salem State Rams (6-5, 3-1 CIAA) got their fourth straight win, Saturday morning when the team took a four-set win over the Elizabeth City State Vikings (2-4, 0-1 CIAA) at the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Volleyball Round Up. The Rams took the hard-fought win behind a terrific overall performance in the match.
As a team, the Rams had a great effort on both offense and defense. The team recorded 51 kills while holding the Vikings to just 25 kills. Sophomore outside hitter Tailar Jackson led the way for the Rams with 12 kills in the match while freshman outside hitter Sanaa Lanier added 10 kills. Defensively, sophomore libero had 24 digs in the match.
The Rams dominated the opening set of the match to take the win. The team had a slow start to the set, but they soon took over and never looked back. After opening the set trailing 1-4, the Rams stormed back with four unanswered points to tie the set, 4-4. The Rams took over the set when a 5-2 run left the team on top, 12-7. From there, the Rams allowed some hope to the Vikings, holding a 13-12 lead, but the Rams soon pulled away with a 12-3 run the gave the team a 25-15 win in the set.
The second set was much more thrilling when the Rams claimed a close win. This time, it was the Rams who came out with the big run, taking a 7-2 lead. From there, the Rams went on to claim a 20-10 lead in the set. But it was then that Rams allowed the Vikings to claw their way back into the set. The WSSU lead was cut down to just two points, 21-19 before the Rams pulled ahead 24-20. Unfortunately, the Rams allowed four unanswered points to the Vikings before a kill from freshman middle blocker Niyonna McIntyre ended the set, 25-23.
The third set belonged to the Vikings, but the Rams didn't make it easy for them. The set was a competitive one in the beginning with the two teams playing to a 5-5 tie. The Rams fell behind by as many as six points, 15-20, but the team stormed back with a five-point run that tied the set, 20-20 after an ECSU error. The Rams would go on to claim a 22-21 lead after a kill from sophomore Rylee Wilson. However, the Rams allowed four unanswered points to the Vikings to take the 25-22 set loss.
After the disappointment of the third set, the Rams came out with an inspired effort in the fourth set to claim the match victory. The Rams broke out in a big way with a 10-1 run to open the set. The Rams pushed their lead to as many as 10 points, 22-12 before the Rams allowed a huge run by the Vikings that left the WSSU lead at just three points, 23-20. The Rams closed the set with a kill from senior Miranda Taylor and a block from McIntyre.
With the win, the Rams improve to 6-5 overall and 3-1 in CIAA play. The team would go on to complete the day with a match against Bowie State. For more information on Rams volleyball, contact the WSSU Office of Athletic Media Relations at (336) 750-2143 or log on to www.WSSURams.com.