Crutcher, Cushman Lead Terps Past Jackets
Oct. 26, 2012
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Ashleigh Crutcher and Mary Cushman combined for 40 kills to lead the Maryland volleyball team (12-12, 3-9 ACC) to a thrilling five-set victory (29-31, 25-20, 25-23, 21-25, 15-7) over Georgia Tech Friday night at Comcast Pavilion. Eight Terrapin hitters totaled 61 kills, the team's third highest total of the year, and converted a season-best 32.8 percent of their attacks in the win.
Cushman, three matches removed from an extended absence, finished one kill shy of a career high by knocking down 20 kills. Cushman's 20 kills are a season high and the native of Rochester, N.Y., also chipped in with 10 digs for her third double-double of the season.
Not to be overlooked, Crutcher was efficient and aggressive throughout the match. The sophomore had 20 kills on .472 hitting. It marked the second-highest kill total of the season for Crutcher.
Remy McBain led the team with 29 assists, while Mackenzie Dagostino added 25 and several timely digs. In addition to her effort on the defensive end, Dagostino tallied a personal-best four service aces. Making her second start at libero, Amy Dion totaled a career-best 24 digs to help keep the potent Georgia Tech hitters off the board.
After four sets could not separate the Terps and Yellow Jackets, the two teams headed for a fifth set. In the frame, Cushman led the way for Maryland with four kills and Adreené Elliott added a vital block to give the Terps a lead they would not relinquish.
With the set tied at two, Elliott stuffed an attack attempt by the Yellow Jackets' Monique Mead to put Maryland ahead for good. Cushman tallied a kill on the next point and Dagostino followed with a service ace to increase the lead.
Georgia Tech cut the lead to one point on three different occasions, but the Terrapins stretched the lead each time and finally put the Yellow Jackets away after Georgia Tech trimmed the lead to 7-6. McBain sparked a six-point spurt with one of her two fifth-set kills and Crutcher slammed it down the middle to start the celebration for the Terps.
The opening set featured 15 ties and six lead changes as neither team earned a lead larger than four points. Crutcher totaled six kills during the set and Dion had eight digs. With the Terps trailing 20-17, Crutcher notched a kill and added block, and Dagostino scored a service ace to tie the set. Dagostino added a kill on the next point, but the Jackets followed with one of their own to tie it 21-21.
The two squads combined for five set points before Georgia Tech took advantage at 29-29 and scored the final two points to earn 1-0 lead.
In the second set, the Terps hit an astounding .600 and were paced by Cushman's six kills. In a set that featured a lot of offense, Maryland earned its largest lead at 15-9 following another Dagostino service ace.
Georgia Tech battled back and cut the deficit to two points, but a 4-1 Maryland run put the Terps up 21-16. After the Jackets trimmed the lead to 22-19, Elliott and Crutcher combined to score three of the next four points to tie the match heading into intermission.
The third set mirrored the first two with little between the two teams. The Yellow Jackets tied the match at 22-22 to put them in position to seize the set. But a service error, one of 17 by the visitors, gave the momentum right back to the Terps.
Following a Georgia Tech timeout, Maryland's defense forced a Yellow Jacket mishit to gain set point. Cushman took it from there two points later to secure another set for Maryland.The fourth set saw the Terps fall into an 11-7 deficit, but fight back to tie the set at 14-14 and 15-15. Each time however, the Yellow Jackets would answer. After Maryland closed within one at 18-17, the Jackets reeled off the next three points to take control of the frame. The Terrapins would not get closer as Georgia Tech won the set 25-21.