CHARLOTTE, NC – The Winston-Salem State Rams (7-12, 6-2 CIAA) took their second straight loss when the team took a four-set loss to the Johnson C. Smith (11-5, 9-1 CIAA), Monday evening. After a slow start, the Rams had a quality offensive outing, but the team could not get past the Golden Bulls in the 16-25, 22-25, 25-23, and 26-28 loss in their second Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Southern Division match.
The loss came in spite of a strong overall effort by the Rams. As a team, WSSU totaled 46 kills in the match, but the team's defense could not match the output of the Golden Bulls who totaled 40 kills with 11 service aces in the match. WSSU junior outside hitter Ytae Cobb led the way for the Rams with 14 kills in the match while sophomore Danyale Berry added a double-double with 12 kills and 13 digs in the match. Defensively, freshman libero added 30 digs.
The Rams struggled in the first set of the match. After playing to a 5-5 tie to open the set, the Rams allowed an eight-point rally by the Golden Bulls to fall behind 8-13. The Rams scored a pair of back-to-back points on JCSU errors to pull to within seven points, 9-16. However, the team got no closer as they never scored consecutive points and ended the set with the 25-16 loss.
The second set was much more competitive for the Rams. Once again, the Rams were competitive early, trailing, 7-8 after a kill from sophomore middle blocker Alexis Gregson-Hammond. But the team allowed five straight points to the Golden Bulls to fall behind, 7-13. Later in the set, the Rams broke out for a rally of their own with five straight points, including a pair of Cobb kills and blocks from Cobb and sophomore Tailar Jackson. The effort tied the set, 16-16. From there, the set went back and forth between the two teams until the final points. The Rams played to a 22-24 score before allowing the Golden Bulls to close the set, 25-22.
The third set belonged to the Rams as the team gave their best effort of the night. The set started on a competitive note once again with the two teams playing to a 13-13 tie. The Rams regained control with three straight points, including a block from Cobb and junior Miranda Taylor. In the final points of the set, the Rams allowed the Golden Bulls to tie the set, 22-22, but the team would not relent with a Cobb kill and a pair of JCSU errors that gave WSSU the 25-23 set win.
The fourth set was the most competitive set of the night as neither team wanted to give in. However, the Rams could not pull out the win. The two teams played to a 10-10 tie before the Rams broke out for six unanswered points. The run included a Cobb service ace and a block from Gregson-Hammond and freshman Alexis Bynum. The effort left the Rams on top, 16-10. The Rams played to a 24-17 lead, but the team allowed seven unanswered points to the Golden Bulls to tie the set, 24-24. The two teams played to a 26-26 tie before the Rams allowed two more JCSU kills to take the 28-26 set and match loss.
With the loss, the Rams fall to 7-12 overall, 6-2 in CIAA play and 0-2 in CIAA Southern Division play. For more information on Rams volleyball, contact the WSSU Office of Athletic Media Relations at (336) 750-2143 or log on to www.WSSURams.com.