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Syracuse Spoils Senior Day for UVA Volleyball

Marina Markova notched 18 kills to lead the Orange to a straight-set victory over the Cavaliers

The Virginia volleyball program celebrated its graduating senior class ahead of UVA’s match against Syracuse on Sunday.

Seniors Alana Walker, Kristen Leland, and Milla Ciprian, who retired from volleyball but remained with the team as a student coach this season, were honored before the match.

The celebration abruptly ended when the match began, as Syracuse won the first four points and went on to a dominant straight-set win over Virginia to hand the Cavaliers their 12th straight loss.

The Orange led wire-to-wire in the first set behind seven kills from Marina Markova, who finished the match with 18 total kills. Syracuse won the opening set 25-19.

After falling behind 8-3 to start the second set, Virginia rallied to close the gap and even took the lead at 13-12. But, the Orange eventually overwhelmed the Cavaliers and won the set 25-22.

Behind four kills from Alana Walker, UVA built a 10-6 lead to start the third set. Walker led Virginia with 12 kills and two blocks, while Grace Turner added 11 kills and six digs. Syracuse won six of the next eight points to even the set at 12-12. From there, the teams traded small leads until Syracuse went on a 5-2 run to set up a match point at 24-21. Brooklyn Borum recorded a kill to stave off Syracuse for one point, but the Orange clinched the match on yet another kill by Marina Markova.

Borum had five kills and 10 blocks in the match. Ashley Le recorded 20 assists and six digs and Hannah Prendergast had 16 assists.

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With the loss, Virginia falls to 8-16 overall and 1-13 in ACC play. Up next, UVA hits the road to play at Wake Forest on Friday night, before returning home next Sunday to face North Carolina, the only team Virginia has beaten in ACC play this season.

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