Oct. 16, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. - Fans turned out in record numbers to see the first volleyball match played in Stegeman Coliseum since the 1996 Summer Olympics on Tuesday night as the Georgia volleyball team took on in-state rival Georgia Tech. The Bulldogs played tough, but ultimately fell 3-1 (25-21, 21-25, 19-25, 22-25) in a hard-fought match in front of 3,222 fans.
"We stalled out in our serving and passing game," head coach Lizzy Stemke said. "The past couple of weeks that has been a strength for us. We started off the match great with that, but then we hit a wall against a really good team. It was a fantastic atmosphere. We are super appreciative of everyone that came out today to support us. Hopefully, we have exposed volleyball to some new faces and fired up our fans for more of the season."
Tirah Le'au led the team with 12 kills, followed by Brittany Northcutt with nine and Elena Perri with seven. Kaylee Kehoe finished with a team-best 19 assists. Defensively, it was Jasmine Eatmon and Le'au who led the way, finishing with five blocks each. Brittany Northcutt led the team with 15 digs.
The Bulldogs opened up to a 5-3 lead in the first set before Georgia Tech tied the set at five. Georgia scored two-straight points to retake the lead at 7-5. A kill by Perri and a Kehoe service ace opened Georgia's lead to 10-7. Kills by Lauren Teknipp and Northcutt made it a 16-12 set and forced Georgia Tech to use its first timeout of the set. The Yellow Jackets scored three-consecutive points that cut Georgia's lead to 17-15 and caused the Bulldogs to call a timeout. Following the break, Georgia scored three of the next four points to cause the Yellow Jackets to use their final timeout of the set. Tech pulled within two at 22-20, forcing the Bulldogs to use their final timeout. The Bulldogs scored three of the final four points of the set, including the game-winner on a kill by Le'au to take set one 25-21.
The Bulldogs opened the second set strong, earning an early 7-3 lead. The Yellow Jackets pulled within one at 11-10, but a Briana Bahr kill made it a two-point set at 12-10. Georgia Tech tied the set at 12 and 13 before taking the lead at 16-13, causing Georgia to use its first timeout of the set. The Bulldogs kept it close, coming within one four times, but the Yellow Jackets scored the final four points to take the second set 25-21.
The Bulldogs again started strong, pulling out to an early a 7-3 lead before Tech tied the set at eight. The teams tied seven times before the Yellow Jackets scored three-straight points to take a 19-16 lead. Georgia Tech scored the final three points to take the set 25-19 and take a 2-1 lead in the match.
The Yellow Jackets took control of the fourth set early, jumping out to a 7-3 lead. The Bulldogs came storming back, scoring four-of-five points to tie the set at 11. The teams tied six more times before Georgia Tech took a 19-17 lead. With Georgia Tech at match point, Georgia scored three-straight to make it a 24-22 set, but Georgia Tech scored the final point of the set to take it 25-22 and take the match 3-1.
Georgia returns to Southeastern Conference action on Sunday, Oct. 21 when it travels to Tuscaloosa, Ala., to take on the Alabama Crimson Tide at 2:30 p.m. ET. Sunday's meeting marks the second time that the teams have faced each other this season. Georgia took the first meeting 3-2.