RIO GRANDE, Ohio — Traditionally, the home team tends to prosper on Senior Day.
For the University of Rio Grande volleyball team, that’s exactly how Saturday afternoon’s game against Carlow University at the Newt Oliver Arena played out.
The RedStorm spotted the Celtics an early lead in every set, but roared back to post a 3-0 (25-19, 25-14, 25-17) victory in River States Conference action.
Rio Grande, which honored a trio of seniors, two departing juniors and its student assistant coach in pre-game ceremonies, improved to 16-10 overall and 4-7 in conference play with the win.
Carlow dropped to 6-15 overall and 0-11 in the RSC.
The Celtics led 7-6 in a see-saw start to the opening set before Rio took control with a 10-2 run.
The exact same scenario cropped up in set two, with a 10-2 RedStorm run – capped by three straight service aces from sophomore Ashley Taylor (Chillicothe, OH) – turning a 7-6 deficit into a commanding 16-9 lead.
Set three saw Carlow again grab a 7-6 lead, but a 4-0 Rio scoring spurt put the RedStorm in front to stay for good.
Senior Katie Hemsley (Jackson, OH) had a match-best 22 digs and five service aces – among the 12 that Rio tallied as a team – to lead the winning effort, while junior Macy Roell (Farmersville, OH) had a match-high 32 assists to go along with 18 digs of her own.
Sophomore Jess Youse (Pettisville, OH) had eight kills to lead the RedStorm’s balanced attack at the net, while also recording one solo block and a pair of block assists.
Carlow had just seven attack errors in the loss, but also finished with just 24 kills as a team.
Ellie Cook had seven kills, 13 digs and the Celtics’ lone block, while Katie Tarasovich also had seven kills and Sabrina Skukalek contributed 21 assists.
Rio Grande returns to action on Tuesday night when it hosts Ohio Dominican University in a non-conference tilt.
First serve is slated for 7 p.m.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.