ASHEVILLE – Three North Carolina A&T Aggies recorded double-doubles against UNC Asheville but were defeated by the UNC Asheville Invitational tournament host 3-1 (25-13, 25-14, 20-25, 25-15) Saturday afternoon at the Justice Center.
Later in the day, Courteney Pitt recorded nine kills but Eastern Kentucky came away with a 3-0 win (25-17, 25-21, 25-19). Junior setter Edie Brewer moved up on the school’s all-time career assist list after combining to record 40 assists on Saturday to increase her career total to 1,326. She is sixth all-time.
“The energy was great and different players stepped in when they needed to,” N.C. A&T coach Hal Clifton said. “It was good to see that we have more depth and capable depth.”
In the first match against UNC Asheville, Pitt led the team with a match-high 17 kills and added a team-high 13 digs. Brewer led the team with 25 assists and added 11 digs and seven kills. Freshman setter Addy Warfield recorded her first collegiate double-double with 12 assists and 10 digs.
UNC Asheville took a 5-2 lead in the first set before the Aggies cut the lead to one at 5-4. But the Bulldogs put together a 6-1 run to take an 11-5 advantage forcing the Aggies to use a timeout. After the timeout, the Aggies were able to get no closer than five points at 15-10. UNCA went on to grab a big lead before closing out the set.
UNCA got out to another lead in the second set. They pushed ahead 15-9 before the Aggies were able to get to within five at 16-11. Similar to the first set, however, UNCA put together a spurt to pull away and clinch the second-set victory.
N.C. A&T got off to a much better start in the third set as they took a 7-1 lead. The Aggies kept a sizeable lead at 17-7, but UNCA did make a run as they eventually cut the Aggies lead to one at 19-18. N.C. A&T would pull away from the Bulldogs by dominating at the net.
Kills by Shabazz and Wilson gave the Aggies a 22-18 lead. After two straight UNCA points, the Aggies scored again on a Bulldogs service error. Pitt and Brewer closed out the set with kills as the Aggies pulled to within one, 2-1 for the match.
Unfortunately, UNCA (3-3) was able to take a 14-5 lead in the fourth. N.C. A&T (0-6) did get to within seven at 19-12, but the Bulldogs ended the set and the match with a 6-0 run.
In the second match against EKU (3-3), Brewer led the team with 15 assists and added eight digs and six kills. Laboy-Rivera led the team with 14 digs. Mallory Porcher added five kills while Warfield added 14 assists and four digs and Wilson added six digs.
The Aggies return to action against Charleston Southern Tuesday at 6 p.m. in Charleston, S.C., before remaining in South Carolina for the Wofford Invitational in Spartanburg. N.C. A&T faces Wofford Friday at 10 a.m. and Gardner-Webb at 4 p.m. They finish with Alabama A&M Saturday at 9 a.m.