East Carolina University volleyball (2-4,0-0 American Athletic Conference) traveled to Conway, South Carolina, for the Chanticleer Classic on Sept. 9 and Sept. 10 to take on Coastal Carolina (4-2,0-0 Sunbelt Conference) Radford University (1-6,0-0 Big South Conference) and the University of North Carolina Wilmington (1-5,0-0 Colonial Athletic Conference).
ECU first played Coastal Carolina (4-2,0-0) on its home court in Conway with Carolina coming out on top 3-0. The Pirates finished the game with its highest hitting percentage of the season so far hitting a .206 while the Chanticleers hit a .317.
Seasoned outside hitter senior Natalie Tyson came out with 17 kills and hit a .480, while fellow teammate senior outside hitter Sydney Kleinman finished with six kills and 11 digs. Freshman setter Kenzie Beckham assisted her teammates and ended with 29 assists and seven digs, fellow freshman middle blocker Amelia Davis came in with four kills.
To start off the match, both teams fought for the lead, but ultimately, Coastal Carolina broke the 5-5 tie both teams had at the start of the match and ended with a 7-0 in the first set. Coastal Carolina player graduate student Doris Carter achieved 14 kills and hit a .480.
ECU put in team effort and almost came out with a win in the second set. The Pirates kicked off with a kill from freshman right side Sophia Kruczko and Tyson achieving an ace brought the Pirates up 12-4. Ultimately, Coastal Carolina would end the second set 15-4, scoring a pair on the Pirates.
Coastal Carolina came out strong with an 11-5 lead on ECU in the third set, the Pirates then took the lead for a bit as sophomore middle blocker Priscilla Jones made a standout play. Coastal Carolina then scored the next six points of the set, untimely winning the game. The Pirates ended with 36 kills, 32 assists and two blocks, which helped the team to prepare for a match the next day against the Radford Highlanders.
The Pirates came out on top over the Highlanders on Sept. 10 winning its first game of the season. The final score came out to be 3-0 as Kleinman achieved a career-high 24 kills, 12 digs and hit a .373, according to ECUPirates. Pirate volleyball took home each set as the team continued in its second game of the Classic.
Tyson came in with a double-double of 10 kills and 10 digs, her teammate freshman libero Tia Shum ending with 20 digs. Sophomore Sariah Schulties made nine digs and Jones came in with three blocks.
Both teams were briefly tied at seven in the first set. A Radford error allowed the Pirates to get ahead 19-15, Radford continued the first set with a timeout and more errors. Ultimately, the Pirates finished the first half with a 25-18 set.
The Pirates used a timeout in the second frame which brought the team up 6-2, ECU then took the lead at 14-10 but Radford caught up briefly tying at 18. Both teams battled it out for the lead but the Pirates’ teamwork allowed the team to finish 33-31.
Radford took the lead at the start of the first half 7-4, but ECU fought back as Kleinman made a kill and the set ended 25-17. The Pirates finished the game with a hitting percentage of .206 and Radford .098, total kills came out at 46 for the Pirates and 35 for the Highlanders. The Pirates took home the win and got ready for their next and final game in the Chanticleer Classic later that day against the University of North Carolina Wilmington.
Pirate volleyball won 3,0 against UNCW on Sept. 10. The Pirates hit a .232 and the Seahawks hit a .149, ECU took the lead in every set and won its second game of the season.
Kleinman made 12 kills, six aces and two blocks for the purple and gold and Tyson had seven kills and two aces. Senior right side Bri Wood returned to the court and came in with six kills, Davis also came on with eight attempts and a .750 hitting percentage
In the first set, the Pirates pulled ahead at 16-10, which was then tied by the Seahawks. The Pirates then brought up the score over UNCW with the help of Kleinman and Tyson with the first set ending with the Pirates on top 25-23.
The Seahawks managed to catch up to the Pirates in the second and third sets. ECU then managed to catch up and take the lead in the second and third sets 25-19 and 25-15.
Pirate volleyball walked away from the Chanticleer Classic with two wins and one loss. Next, ECU will take on Appalachian State University in the Pirate International at home in Minges Coliseum on Sept. 17 at 11 a.m.