By: Jake Snyder, Cumberland (Tenn.) Sports Information Graduate Assistant
LEBANON, Tenn. – The Cumberland volleyball team outlasted Tennessee Temple in straight sets to open the season with a 3-0 victory Wednesday at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center.
Head coach Dewayne Deering earned his 500th career victory with the win. Deering’s win total ranks him ninth among active coaches in the NAIA.
The Bulldogs (1-0) jumped out to a 12-6 lead in the opening set thanks to a six-point run in the early going. Tennessee Temple (0-1) never got within five points as CU coasted to a 25-18 win.
The Crusaders were not content to go down so easy in set two as the two squads played neck-and-neck for much of the frame. Tied at 18, the
Bulldogs used a 7-3 run to escape with a 25-21 victory.
After struggling early in the final set, Cumberland settled, rattling off nine out of 11 points to take a commanding 20-13 lead. They concluded the match with a 25-17 victory.
Freshman Abby Shaw provided a team-high nine kills in her Bulldog debut with a .368 attack percentage. Senior Mackenzie Gass added seven kills of her own on the evening.
Junior Kasi Wells provided a team-high three service aces and 16 assists. Junior Laura Peavy’s 10 digs paced the squad.
The Bulldogs now turn sights to a two-day, four-game weekend at the Sewanee Invitational. CU opens the classic Friday against Pikeville at noon. A match against Pensacola Christian will follow at 2 p.m. The team will play another doubleheader Saturday, facing Brescia University and Piedmont College at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m., respectively.