Zinaich ties school record in win

Elena Zinaich (photo by Craig Chase, craigchasephotography.com)
Elena Zinaich (photo by Craig Chase, craigchasephotography.com)

FREDERICK, Md. - Elena Zinaich tied an 18-year old school record with 28 kills as the Hood College volleyball team outlasted New Jersey City University 3-2 in the second match of the evening at the Seahawk/Blazer Invitational at BB&T Arena. In their first match of the day, the Blazers swept Valley Forge 3-0. 

Set scores

  • Hood defeated Valley Forge 25-12, 25-7, 25-14. 
  • Hood defeated New Jersey City 25-27, 25-16, 25-20, 21-25, 15-6.

Inside the Box Score

  • Zinaich had nearly half of the Blazers' 60 kills against the Gothic Knights and hit .619 for the match. Her 28 kills matched Kelly Ashley's school record from the 2000 season. 
  • Payton Belella filled up the stat sheet with 43 assists, 16 digs, six aces and five kills. 
  • Renee Reus had a career-best 29 digs. 

How it Happened

  • Down 1-0 in the match, Hood trailed 13-3 in the second set before mounting a monumental comeback. The Blazers finished the set with a 22-3 run, including the final 19 points of the set. Eight points during the run came via kills by Zinaich. Robyn Reus maintained service for the final 19 points, including four aces. 
  • With the score tied at 25-25 in the first set, an attack error by Hood and a service ace from Madeline Lopez gave the Gothic Knights the win. 
  • Hood trailed 15-14 in the third set but a kill by Courtney Hutchinson tied the score and the Blazers never trailed again to take a 2-1 lead. 
  • The fourth set featured eight ties before New Jersey City forced a fifth set. 
  • Hood cruised to a 15-6 win in the fifth set to take the match. The Blazers hit .500 in the decisive set while holding the Gothic Knights to just two kills and five errors. 


  • Pamela Florimon had 17 kills for NJCU. 
  • Stephanie Duque served seven aces. 
  • The tournament was slated to be played at St. Mary's (Md.) but the impending Hurricane Florence forced a venue change across the state to Hood. 

Up Next

The Seahawk Blazer Invitational wraps up on Saturday, September 15.