The Orange and Cedar Ridge volleyball teams became the first squads to play against the new Big 8 Conference on Thursday night, and the evening didn’t go as they wanted.

Orange lost a 3-2 heartbreaker to East Chapel Hill in Hillsborough on scores of 26-24, 23-25, 16-25, 25-16 and 15-9. It was the first loss of the season for the Panthers, who were playing its third match in four days.

Senior Avery Riley finished with 13 kills, two blocks and two digs for the Panthers (3-1, 0-1 in the Big 8), Sophomore Emma Clements registered two aces, eleven kills and 25 digs. Senior co-captain Caroline Compton had three aces, two kills, 22 assists and 13 digs. Co-captain Bailey Lucas came up with four aces, four kills, one block, 17 assists and seven digs.

Meanwhile in Pittsboro, Northwood remained undefeated by beating Cedar RIdge 3-1 on scores of 25-15, 25-22, 24-26 and 25-20. The Red Wolves fall to 3-2, 0-1 in the Big 8, while Northwood is 5-0 after its initial conference game.

On Monday, Cedar Ridge has another three-game week. It starts Monday with a road trip to Jordan, followed by a home game against Chapel Hill the following day. The Red Wolves finish the week at archrival Orange on Thursday night.

Orange travels to Eastern Alamance on Monday, then plays its second conference game at Hillside on Tuesday.


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