Eagles Overcome Chanticleers, 3-1
Sarah Gildersleeve (Naples, Fla.) added 13 kills for the Eagles, as Kate Van Dyke (Shawnee, Kan.) posted a career-best 52 assists from the floor. Senior libero Cristin Haines (Palos Heights, Ill.) led Georgia Southern in digs, posting 22 for the match. Sanford (Avondale, Ariz.) closed out the match striking .333 from the floor as the Eagles hit .238 with 65 kills, 58 assists and 72 digs.
“I was really pleased with the way we maintained our composure and really played disciplined in both sets three and four. We had a lack of focus and made quite a few unforced errors in game two, so it was nice to rebound against a really solid Coastal Carolina team,” said head coach Chad Callihan. “They really do a nice job of fighting for every point, forcing you to be disciplined and not make any unforced errors. I thought we did a nice job of that in the final two sets and it was a great win for us. And I think we learned a lot from it.”
The Eagles struck first in the opening set, garnering an early 8-4 lead. A 3-0 run by Coastal Carolina gave Georgia Southern a one point lead, forcing a timeout by the home squad. At 10-8 GSU, Gildersleeve nailed her first kill of the match and would give the Eagles a 12-10 lead with her second kill. Georgia Southern opened their lead to four points, 17-13, before the Chanticleers closed in to a one-point game, 17-16. Consecutive Sanford kills gave the Eagles a 19-16 advantage as the sophomore added two more kills before a Lauren Claybaugh (Danville, Calif.) kill gave Georgia Southern set point at 24-21. Claybaugh’s fourth kill of the set secured the opening set for the Eagles, 25-23.
Coastal Carolina hit .364 from the floor to take the second set, evening the match at 1-all. The Eagles relinquished the lead early and could never regain hold. The Chanticleers led by as many as six points off Chelsy Kimes’ and Sierra Livesay’s four kills apiece. Coastal Carolina capitalized on Georgia Southern’s seven hitting errors to the Chanticleers’ two.
A distinguishing third set ensued following intermission. Georgia Southern grabbed the set, 25-20, off Sanford’s eight kills. The Eagles hit a match-high .343 from the floor with 16 kills, 15 assists and 12 digs. The two squads battled for the lead, tying the match twice before Coastal Carolina grabbed the lead at 4-3. The Chanticleers would hold the advantage until the Eagles tied the set at 11-all. A 12-all tie would be the closest Coastal Carolina would get to the lead the remainder of the set as Georgia Southern fought for every point and closed out the set 25-20.
Georgia Southern wasted no time in the fourth set attacking the Chanticleers. With the match tied at 14-all, a Sanford kill gave the Eagles the lead and another Sanford kill gave the Eagles match point at 24-18. Gildersleeve closed the match with her 13th kill of the day as Georgia Southern took the fourth and final set, 25-21.
“Sarah Gildersleeve did a really nice job for us. She stepped in for us midway through the match last night and picked right up where she left off today in both attacking and blocking and taking charge while she’s at the net,” said Callihan. “She’s worked really hard and I’m pleased to see it paying off for her.”
In morning action of the tournament, Auburn grabbed a 3-0 win over Wake Forest (25-18, 25-19, 25-15) to improve to 7-3 on the year. Freshman Sarah Bullock posted a season-high 12 kills leading the Tigers to victory.
Georgia Southern will close out the tournament facing Auburn at 7 p.m. tonight. Wake Forest will take on Coastal Carolina at 5 p.m. to begin the nightcap of the Bash in the ‘Boro presented by Verizon Wireless. For complete tournament information, visit the tournament central page by clicking here.
- Category: Volleyball
- Published on Saturday, 12 September 2009 15:01