The North Carolina volleyball team (10-9, 4-6 ACC) won in five sets against Clemson (12-9, 3-6 ACC) on Friday night. On Sunday, though, they lost in four sets at No. 13 Georgia Tech (17-3, 8-2 ACC).
UNC opened weekend play at Clemson with a 3-2 victory against the Tigers. The win served as North Carolina’s third straight conference win, giving the Tar Heels the momentum they need as they approach the final month of regular season play.
In the first set, UNC and Clemson traded points back and forth, keeping the game tight early on. First-year setter Zoe Behrendt orchestrated the offense for the Tar Heels, spreading the ball between several North Carolina attackers.
In only her seventh kill of the night, junior outside hitter Mabrey Shaffmaster tallied her 1,000th career kill, and finished with a match-high 25 kills.
In a match that was led by strong attackers on both sides, the game was won at the net with UNC recording a season-best 16 total blocks in the match. Sophomore middle blocker Sadie Swift led the Tar Heels in blocks with eight total and two in the fifth set, both at crucial moments.
First-year opposite hitter Sydney Nolan had a career-best six total blocks, while Shaffmaster, Behrendt and graduate setter Maria Miggins each added five blocks apiece.
After North Carolina dropped the fourth set 25-20, the Tar Heels entered the fifth set hoping to uphold their three match win-streak.
UNC won the set 15-8, behind Behrendt's career-best 48 assists on the night and 18 digs by sophomore libero Maddy May. On the defensive end, May, Shaffmaster and Miggins each finished with double-digits digs in the match against the Tigers.
“Friday night was a hard fought win against Clemson who's playing really well,” head coach Mike Schall said. “Our kids were really tough and just kind of gutted out a win against a team that had been playing well.”