Sept. 10, 2013
STATESBORO, Ga. – Brittany Northcutt posted her first double-double of the season to lead the Georgia volleyball team to a 3-0 (25-18, 25-14, 25-13) win over in-state rival Georgia Southern on Tuesday, Sept. 9 at Hanner Fieldhouse in Statesboro, Ga. The Bulldogs are now 5-1 on the season, with each of its wins coming in straight-sets. Georgia Southern drops to 6-2 this year.
“It was a great road win for this team,” Head Coach Lizzy Stemke said. “We are really pleased with the execution of our game plan and our fundamentals, especially after a tough weekend with a lot of travel. We were very sharp from the very beginning of the match and were able to keep the pressure on and get stronger as the match went on. We were also able to go to our bench and give some players some valuable experience at a high level, which is important for the longevity of the season.”
Northcutt finished with 11 kills, 14 digs and two service aces to pace an offensive attack that saw the Bulldogs hit .330 as a team. Lauren Teknipp added nine kills, while Stacey Smith recorded eight kills in the win. Kaylee Kehoe led the team with 17 assists and was strong from the service line, recording two service aces. Defensively, Elena Perri led the team at the net, recording four blocks, followed by Smith with three. Allison Summers led the team with 14 digs.
Northcutt made her presence known early, recording the first two Georgia kills that helped the Bulldogs to an early 3-1 lead in the first set. Using the serve of Summers, Georgia increased its lead to 5-1. The teams traded points over the next 13 possessions, but the Bulldogs were able to maintain a 12-9 lead. Georgia Southern fought back to within one at 13-12, but a service error and a kill by Jasmine Eatmon allowed Georgia to extend its lead to 15-12. Georgia held the lead for the remainder of the set and scored five of the final eight points to take the first set 25-18.
The Bulldogs stormed out to a 5-1 lead in the second set, forcing the Eagles to burn a timeout early. Georgia Southern pulled to within three at 9-6 before a Northcutt kill sparked a 3-0 run that gave the Bulldogs a 12-6 lead. Georgia strung together four consecutive points, including kills by Smith, Eatmon and Kehoe, to extend its lead to 19-11. The Bulldogs allowed Georgia Southern to score just three more points during the set on their way to a 25-14 win. During the set, the Bulldogs recorded a season-best .424 attack percentage.
Holding a 2-0 lead in the match, Georgia used the serve of Northcutt to take an early 5-1 lead. Georgia Southern cut the lead to three at 8-5, but a kill by Tirah Le’au and a block by Eatmon and Teknipp stymied the run and allowed the Bulldogs to take a 10-5 lead. With Kehoe at the service line, Georgia put together a 5-0 run that made it a 16-9 set. During the run, Kehoe recorded two service aces. A kill by Desiree McCray forced Georgia Southern to use a timeout with Georgia holding a 19-10 lead. The Bulldogs scored seven of the final nine points, including a block by Perri and Northcutt that sealed the 25-13 set three win, as well as the 3-0 victory over Georgia Southern.
Georgia gets back in action this weekend, Sept. 13-14, when it hosts the Benson’s Hospitality Invitational in Stegeman Coliseum in Athens, Ga. The Bulldogs will host North Florida, Louisiana-Lafayette and UNC Greensboro during the two-day tournament. Georgia’s first match will be Friday, Sept. 13 at 7 p.m., against North Florida.