The Covenant volleyball team rallied from a set down to force a decisive final set, but fell to host Maryville in the fifth to suffer a 3-2 loss (21-25, 25-22, 25-20, 14-25, 15-8) in USA South action on Wednesday night.
It was the conference opener for both Covenant (5-6, 0-1 USA South) and Maryville (5-7, 1-0 USA South).
The match was a rematch of last spring's USA South West Division title bout. Covenant and Maryville went back-and-forth with 22 ties and eight lead changes throughout the five-set contest.
Grace Logterman and Emma Kalbfleisch led the Scots with nine kills and five total blocks each in the loss.
Logterman and Johnson each had three solo blocks, while Logterman hit a match-high .533. Summer Johnson (14 assists, 17 digs) and Rachel Bartlett (19 assists, 15 digs) each had double-doubles, with Johnson also tallying seven kills. Kyla Bailey added seven kills and Anna Baldwin recorded 14 digs.
Covenant hit .304 in the opening set to take a 25-21 win. The Scots trailed 15-12, but went on an 8-1 run that was capped by a Bailey kill to go ahead 20-16. After Maryville trimmed the lead to two (23-21), Covenant received back-to-back kills from Bailey and Kalbfleisch to notch the set win.
The second set saw 10 ties and a pair of lead changes, but Maryville opened a 22-19 lead late in the frame and hung on from there to even the match. Covenant led early in the third only to see Maryville rally back and methodically push the lead to six before the host Scots took a 2-1 match lead with a 25-20 set win.
Covenant scored five straight points early in the fourth set, highlighted by two straight solo blocks from Logterman, to take an 8-3 lead. Covenant would not trail the rest of the frame and led by as many as 12 (22-10) before a Maryville error sent the contest into a fifth set.
It was a tale of three runs in the fifth. Maryville opened the set with three straight points before Covenant rattled off five consecutive to take a 6-4 lead and force a Maryville timeout. Out of the timeout, Maryville outscored Covenant 11-2 to rally for the set and match victory.
Maryville got 16 kills from Isabella Samson along with 14 kills from Landry Frisch. Meredith Bonee added 44 assists, while Natalie Watts and Amii Ingalls had 21 digs each.
Covenant continues USA South play on Saturday with a tri-match at Piedmont. The Scots take on Piedmont at 12 p.m. before playing LaGrange at 2 p.m.