WINSTON-SALEM, NC – It took a lot of effort, but the Winston-Salem State Rams (16-9, 13-4 CIAA) were up to the task when the team took a four-set win over the Livingstone Blue Bears (12-12, 7-10 CIAA), Thursday evening. The Rams had to fight and claw for every point against a tough Blue Bears team that made every point an effort in the 25-14, 25-19, 23-25, and 25-21 win.
The Rams took the win behind a strong, balanced offensive attack to claim the win. As a team, the Rams totaled 49 kills in the match with senior outside hitter Miranda Taylor leading the way with a double-double 12 kills with 18 digs while fellow senior outside hitter Ytae Cobb adding 11 kills. The Rams were equally balanced on defense with junior outside hitter Tailar Jackson adding 19 digs and sophomore libero Myra Wallace adding 18 digs.
Things looked good for the Rams through the first two sets of the match. The team dominated the first set, 25-14 before taking an equally impressive second set win, 25-19. WSSU opened the match with a 12-3 run and never looked back on their way to the first set win. In the second set, the Rams and the Blue Bears played to a 7-7 tie before the Rams broke the set open with a 13-7 run to take a 20-14 lead. From there, the two teams scored five points each to leave the Rams with 25-19 second set win.
In the final two sets of the match, the two teams really came alive for the hardest fought points of the match. The Rams opened the third set with a 7-0 lead, but the Blue Bears fought their way back. They outscored the Rams 13-3 to leave the Rams trailing, 13-10. WSSU fell behind by as many as five points, 15-10 before going on a 10-5 run of their own to tie the set, 20-20, after a Taylor service ace. The Rams would not overtake the Blue Bears as they fell, 23-25 in the set.
The fourth set was another hard-fought set with the Rams holding on the claim the match win. The two teams played to a 10-10 tie before the Rams took a 13-10 lead. The Rams went on a 7-2 run to take a 20-12 lead over the Blue Bears. The run was all that the Rams needed as they cruised to the win. It was a kill from junior opposite side hitter Danyale Berry that sealed the match, 25-21.
With the win, the Rams close the 2019 regular season with a 16-9 overall record. The team improves to 13-4 in Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) play. The Rams will now turn their attentions to the 2019 CIAA Volleyball Championship Tournament. The Rams will enter the tournament as the third-seed from the CIAA Southern Division. The team will head to Richmond, Virginia, Tuesday to take on the second-seeded Virginia Union Panthers in a 5:30 p.m. match.
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.