Cecich records 31 assists, Derby knocks down 12 kills
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Senior Kelly Derby turned in a 12-kill performance, but the Pirates were unable to stop Marshall as the East Carolina volleyball team dropped a 3-1 (21-25, 25-22, 8-25, 21-25) contest to the Thundering Herd Friday night at Cam Henderson Center in Huntington, W.Va.
Derby recorded her fourth double-digit kill performance of the season and added a pair of digs, and a block assist in the setback. She was the only Pirate to reach double figures in the match. Shelby Beasley led the squad in digs for the 11th time in 17 matches after registering a team-high 16 digs. Whitney Campbell reached double figures defensively with 11 digs while adding four kills, a pair of blocks, and hit .300 for ECU. Zarah Cecich set the pace for the Pirates as she tallied 31 assists and contributed four digs, two kills, and a service ace for ECU.
East Carolina (1-16, 0-6 C-USA) was on point in the first set as the Pirates hit .225 as a team and knocked down 14 kills in the set. Derby led the squad with five kills and hit .400, while Beasley tallied five digs, and Cecich recorded 11 assists. The Pirates tied the score seven times and exchanged leads with Marshall (15-5, 5-1 C-USA) twice before dropping the set by four points (25-21).
The momentum the Pirates gained in the first set rolled over into the second set. ECU began the second frame with six consecutive points to force Marshall into a timeout. Even after the Herd got on the board, the Pirates surged ahead taking a 16-9 lead on a kill off the hands of Virginia Fitch. After the Thundering Herd called another timeout, they were able to crawl back into the game and pull within three (23-20). The Pirates continued to battle, and although Marshall cut their lead to one (22-23), they weren’t fazed. Instead, ECU forced Marshall into a pair of errors to end the game, 25-22.
After having their rally cut short, the Thundering Herd turned the tables on East Carolina. Marshall jumped out in front 10-4 on a kill by Katy Schad and did not surrender the lead. The hosts cruised ahead to a 25-8 victory over the Pirates.
Junior Hannah Allgood stepped up offensively in the fourth set as she notched five of her six kills in the frame and hit .417 for ECU. Despite playing hard and staying close, East Carolina was unable to get that extra push to put them on top. The Thundering Herd edged the Pirates, 25-21 in the fourth set to take the frame and the match.
The Pirates will return to the friendly confines of Minges Coliseum Friday, Oct. 12, when they host Conference USA foe Houston at 7 p.m. Live stats and video will be available at www.ECUPirates.com.