Eagles Rally Past Jaguars, 3-2
Tournament action continues on Friday with four matches. Georgia Southern (5-6) will take the court again at 7 p.m. facing off against Winthrop. South Alabama (5-7) will hit the court at 10 a.m., also against Winthrop.
“Well it feels good to get a win. We’re happy about the outcome, but we’re not necessarily happy about the way it went,” stated Head Coach Chad Callihan. “We definitely saw a better vibe from South Alabama there in sets three and four and hopefully we will learn how to manage that a little better.”
Offensively, junior Bethany Sanford (Avondale, Ariz.) and sophomore Moriah Bellissimo (Blackstone, Va.) led the Eagles with 13 kills each. The duo also posted 14 and 19 digs, respectively. The double-doubles marked the third for Bellissimo and seventh for Sanford this season. Parker Small (Charlotte, N.C.) played a solid game, picking up 12 kills to go along with five block assists and two service aces. Hannah Nelson (Norcross, Ga.) completed the double-digit kill numbers contributing 11. Sophomore setter Kate Van Dyke (Shawnee, Kan.) posted a match-high 22 digs and 46 assists.
For the Jags, Jaclyn Nickels led with a career-best 14 kills, while Samia Salomao posted a double-double with 13 kills and 15 digs. Jenna Hassell led the team with 20 digs, while Jennica Hagberg recorded 42 assists.
Georgia Southern wasted no time grabbing the first two sets, jumping out with early leads in both. The Eagles reeled off five unanswered points to open set one and kept the momentum going obtaining a 15-8 lead off a Nelson kill. Following a kill from Small to move Georgia Southern in front, 20-13, the Eagles closed out the frame with a 5-0 run highlighted by a pair of Sanford kills.
Enjoli Johnson (Lilburn, Ga.) paved the way in set two, accumulating four kills on five attempts for a .800 clip. The freshman also posted a block assist. Keeping the momentum from set one, Georgia Southern grabbed a 3-0 lead, but USA crawled back bringing the score to 6-5 before the Eagles went on an 8-2 run to take a 14-7 advantage. A pair of consecutive kills from Johnson pushed the score out to 20-11 before Lauren LaRocque (Borger, Texas) sealed the set win serving up an ace. The Eagles closed out the set with a 3-0 run for a 25-13 win.
South Alabama came out strong in the third set, taking its first lead of the match at 3-2. The third frame witnessed three lead changes and five ties before the Jags took their final lead at 11-10 after an Eagle attack error. The Eagles drew the score to one point on a couple occasions, but USA pulled out set three, 25-19.
Fueled by set three, USA took a 3-0 lead in set four and never looked back. Trailing by five at 14-9, Georgia Southern rattled off three consecutive points, drawing the score to a two-point margin at 14-12, forcing the Jags to call a timeout. USA held the lead through 23-20 before a Nelson kill sparked a 3-0 Eagle run, knotting the set at 23-all. A pair of Nickels kills sealed the set win for the Jags, 25-23, evening the match at 2-2.
Leading 5-3 in the deciding fifth set, Georgia Southern dismantled hopes of a Jaguar comeback win reeling off the next five points for a 10-3 lead. The Jags picked up two more points before Sanford sealed the match win with her 13th kill of the night for a 15-5 set win.
Georgia Southern plays three more matches in the SpringHill Suites Invitational facing Winthrop next at 7 p.m. on Friday. To view a full tournament schedule and more tournament information, please visit the SpringHill Suites Invitational page by clicking here.
- Category: Volleyball
- Published on Thursday, 16 September 2010 22:46