For the home opener of the 2014 season the GRU volleyball team hosted the GRU Augusta Invitational, and protected home court with a 3-0 sweep.
After winning the last three matches of the Queens Invitational in Charlotte N.C., Sept 5-6, the Jaguars are now on a six-game winning streak with a 6-1 overall record.
The GRU Augusta Invitational was a two-day event held Sept. 12-13. The Jaguars faced off against Emmanuel (Ga.), Carson-Newman and crosstown rival Paine College.
On day one the Jaguars defeated the Emmanuel Lions 3-1. The first set was easily won by the Jaguars 25-17. In set two the score was tied at 21-all before senior Kristen Koch scored three kills and senior Maggie Darling provided a key service ace to close the set 25-23.
The Lions clawed back into the match by winning set three 25-17. The Jaguars dug themselves a 13-5 hole thanks to multiple attack errors and couldn’t recover.
However, the Jaguars didn’t rattle, wining the match in the fourth set. A kill from Koch gave the Jaguars a 24-10 lead. The matched looked to be over until the Lions strung together nine straight points for a 24-19 score.
In need of a big play, head coach Sharon Quarles subbed in freshman Sadie Thurston. And Thurston answered the call with a kill to end the match.
The next day the Jaguars wrapped the GRU Augusta Invitational with a doubleheader against the Carson-Newman Eagles and the Pain College Lions.
Each match ended in a 3-0 shutout by the Jaguars. Against the Eagles the Jaguars took the first set 25-15, hitting .344 as a team.
Set two proved to be more of a challenge. The Jaguars and Eagles exchanged blows, and deep into the set to scoreboard read 23-all.
To obtain game-point junior Katie Beresford used her 6-2 height for a big time block, and freshman sensation Kali Boatwright delivered a clutch service ace.
Then the Jaguars sealed the match against the Eagles in dominant finish, taking set three 25-15.
In the Jaguars final match of the GRU Augusta Invitational they made light work of the Lions.
The Jaguars won the match in three straight sets 25-7, 25-15 and 25-18. Dominant in every stat category, the Jaguars outhit the Lions .293 to .014, tallied 46 digs and accumulated 15 aces.