Maryland volleyball wins five-set thriller in home opener

Photo by Chris Lyons/Maryland Terrapins

In Maryland’s 3-0 Sunday loss to Navy, the Terps struggled to close out late games. All three sets were decided in the closing moments, with Maryland leading late in two of the three sets. Maryland had the opportunity to right their wrongs late in the second and fifth sets of Friday night’s matchup against Coastal Carolina and delivered.

Freshman libero Jonna Spohn came up huge and delivered a clutch dig that set up a Eva Rohrbach 25-23 second set-clinching kill that put to rest a 11-6 run by the Chanticleer. 

The Terps made a mass substitution, subbing out four players late in the second set when they had a 18-12 lead over the Chanticleers and Coastal Carolina responded with a 4-0 run to pull within two points. The two sides went back and forth until the Terps  stretched the lead out to four, 24-20. Coastal Carolina responded to three consecutive match points with a kill before Rohrbach delivered the biggest kill of the night. 

The Terps didn’t win the match in the second set but instead learned how to survive a near disaster, a moment that served them well in closing out Coastal Caroline in the fifth set. 

After taking home the first two sets of the game, Maryland waned in the next two sets, allowing Coastal Carolina to tie the game at two apiece.  

In the fifth set, Maryland was up 13-10. But similar to previous sets, Coastal Carolina rallied back. The Chanticleers scored on two Maryland match-points to slash Maryland’s lead to one, 14-13. After two consecutive timeouts, Sydney Dowler delivered Maryland (5-2) their 3-2 win over Coastal Carolina (3-5). Maryland won their first fiver-setter of the season, a match they struggled to win last season going 1-5 on the year. 

After ending Sunday’s matches cold Maryland volleyball started Friday’s match hot, beginning the game with a 14-9 lead, a five point advantage that Coastal Carolina never crossed for the remainder of the set.  Sam Csire led the way with five kills in the first, with Eva Rohrbach and Laila Ivey close behind with three kills each. The Terps dished out 15 kills on 25 swings and only had three misfires. 

The Chanticleers kept the game close in the second set, starting the set with a two point lead and keeping the matchup with one point until the Terps stretched the lead to 13-9 with a 4-0 run. The Terps had 3 kills and a service ace by Lilly Gunther during the run. Csire continued her fiery first set performance with a kill and a service ace midway through the second set to give Maryland a five point lead, 16-11. 

The Terps did not gain a single lead in the third set despite being within three points for most of the set. Maryland hit their lowest percentage in the set, .258%, and had their game high eight turnovers. Coastal Caroline was able to counter their 8 third set errors with 15 kills, 2 service aces and three blocks. The Chanticleers’ Jasmine Rivest led the game with 19 kills on the night

The Terrapins found themselves in the same dilemma that Coastal Carolina was in the second set, down 12-17. But unlike the Chanticleer they were able to take the lead late with their 8-2 run, giving them a one point lead. The Terps, however, couldn’t close two game-set points, first allowing Coastal Carolina to tie the game at 24 and then allowing them to tie the game at 25. Lauren Malone delivered the final three kills of the set to give the Chanticleers the set win.