Charlotte won its first five-set match of 2012 with players posting career highs in the 3-2 win (25-23, 23-25, 18-25, 25-18, 15-11) over UM-Kansas City Saturday morning at the Runnin' Bulldog Classic, hosted by Gardner-Webb. The Roos and Niners were the only two teams in the field with winning records. Charlotte improved to 6-2 on the season, while UMKC is now 6-5.
Junior Amanda Videmsek (Highland Heights, Ohio / Beaumont School) followed her team-leading 15-kill performance Friday with a career-high 23 kills Saturday morning. She had only five errors in 44 attempts for a .409 attack percentage. She leads Charlotte with a .377 attack percentage for the season.
The 49ers had to come back and win the last two sets to claim the victory. It was Charlotte's first five-set win of the season, after posting a 7-2 mark in five-set matches last year, totaling more than half of the team's victories.
Charlotte won the opening set as it has in all eight matches this season, outpacing the Roos for the two-point win. There were 10 ties and two lead changes in the set, with Charlotte leading most of the way, though the lead only touched four points on time in the set.
The Roos saw the 49ers jump out to a 3-0 lead in the second, but put up a late 7-2 run to tie the match at 20. In the late stages, UMKC was able to lean on Emily Lucas for late kills to even the match. Lucas tied two other players for eight kills for the Roos.
Charlotte led briefly to start the third set, but four attack errors in a five-point stretch sabotaged Charlotte's efforts in the third set, and the Niners never got back in the match in the late stages to go down a set.
The 49ers managed to win their first fourth set of the season. Charlotte surged out to a 4-1 lead, getting three kills from freshman Carly Ochs (Town and Country, Mo. / St. Joseph's Academy) to power the early attack. The Roos then put together a 5-0 run, quickly answered by a Charlotte 7-0 run to set the tone. The set stayed mostly in Charlotte's three-point favor until the Niners slowly built a longer lead and forced the tiebreaker.
Charlotte forced the Roos into some early errors for an early niners lead, and Videmsek added three more kills to put away the match.
Senior setter Lily Vera (Anderson, S.C. / Stone Bridge HS) posted a career-high 59 assists in the match. She holds an 11.89 assists-per-set average to this point of the season. Senior Bianca Rouse (Columbia, S.C. / Keenan HS) contributed her fifth double-double of the season, coming in the team's last six matches, with 18 kills and 16 digs. Rouse is averaging exactly four kills per set in 2012. Senior libero Jenna Litoborski (Lemont, Ill.) had a match-best 23 digs. Junior Christina Drake (Greer, S.C. / Riverside HS) added a season-high 15 digs and freshman Michelle Hovey (Raleigh, N.C. / Lighthouse) collected a career-best 12 digs in the match.
Charlotte will play host Gardner-Webb in the evening session, starting at 5 p.m. to finish the weekend. The Niners can do no worse than tie for the team title at the Classic this weekend.