Howard tops North Carolina Central

DURHAM, N.C. – Howard University women’s volleyball team erased an early match deficit to top North Carolina Central (NCCU) in four sets (18-25, 25-22, 25-15, 25-23).

With the victory, HU improved to 8-11 (5-2 MEAC) while NCCU dropped to 4-11 (3-3 MEAC) on the season.

Middle blockers Cimone Woodard (Missouri City, Texas) and Tamar Wells (Apopka, Fla.) led the way, finishing with 12 kills apiece in the win.

Both squads were deadlocked at 12 midway through the first set until the Eagles scored four unanswered to create separation and win game one, 18-25.

In game two, NCCU held a six-point lead, 7-13, but the Bison fought back. Late in the set, both clubs were tied at 20 until HU closed out the game with a 5-2 spurt to win set two, 25-22.

In a pivotal game three, NCCU grabbed the upper hand early, but Howard recaptured the momentum and dominated set three, 25-15.

Late into the fourth set, North Carolina Central took another six-point lead, 20-14, but the Bison refused to go away. HU went on an 8-1 run, capped off by a kill from junior Alex Smith (New Orleans), and took the lead, 22-21.

After an Eagles’ timeout, both squads were tied at 23 until a hitting error by NCCU and another kill from Smith sealed the deal for HU.

Rookie Bria Woodard (Missouri City, Texas) registered 10 kills and seven digs while Smith added eight kills in the win.

Senior Milexa Cardona (Kissimmee, Fla.) recorded a double-double (32 assists & 13 digs) in the win.

For NCCU, Arlanda Faulkner notched a double-double (15 kills & 13 digs) in the loss.

Howard University freshman Cimone Woodard had a match-high 12 kills in the road win at North Carolina Central. Photo by Edward C. Jones