Oct. 11, 2013
COLUMBIA, S.C. – Georgia handed the South Carolina Gamecocks a 3-0 (25-21, 25-20, 27-25) loss on Friday, Oct. 11 at the Volleyball Competition Facility in Columbia, S.C. With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 14-3 on the year, which matches last year’s win total, and is now 4-1 in Southeastern Conference action. With the loss, South Carolina drops to 10-7 overall and 2-3 in the SEC.
“This was a great SEC road win,” Head Coach Lizzy Stemke said. “We were really aggressive in our serve and pass game from the first point, which was a big goal of ours. We also did a really nice job of executing our game plan and keeping the pressure on. I am really proud of how we came back after getting behind in the third set. To be able to do that on the road in the SEC is hard to do and I am proud of this team and how they were able to do that.”
Tirah Le’au led the team offensively with 13 kills and hit at a .348 clip. Brittany Northcutt added eight kills, followed by Lauren Teknipp with seven. Georgia was effective at the service line, finishing with 11 aces, led by Allison Summers with three. Maggie Baumert, Jasmine Eatmon and Chloe Buckendahl each registered two service aces. Kaylee Kehoe paced the offense with 25 assists. Elena Perri led the team with four blocks, followed by Le’au with three. Stacey Smith and Eatmon finished with two blocks each. Summers led all Bulldogs with 13 digs.
The teams kept the opening set close over the first several possessions, with the score tying four times before either team reached 10. With Georgia trailing 10-8 a Gamecock service error sparked a 4-0 run that included a pair of blocks by Smith and Perri that gave the Bulldogs a 12-10 lead. With the score tied at 15, Eatmon scored back-to-back points for Georgia on a kill and a service ace that helped the Bulldogs to an 18-15 lead that forced South Carolina to use a timeout. With Georgia holding a 22-20 advantage, Le’au scored the final three Bulldog points, including the last two on solo blocks, to seal Georgia’s 25-21 set one win.
Using a 4-0 run that was highlighted by a pair of Le’au kills, the Bulldogs stormed out to a 10-4 lead in the second set that forced South Carolina to use a timeout. The Gamecocks came to within four at 11-7 with a service ace, but the Bulldogs answered with back-to-back points that gave them a 13-7. Georgia extended its lead to 18-12, but the Gamecocks fought back to make it a five-point set at 20-15. A 3-0 run by the Gamecocks caused Georgia to use a timeout at the 23-20 mark. Following the break, Georgia scored two-straight points on kills by Northcutt and Le’au that sealed the 25-20 set two win and gave the Bulldogs a 2-0 match lead.
Georgia opened up to a 4-2 lead in the third set before the Gamecocks tied the set at four. The Bulldogs responded by scoring the next three points to retake the lead at 7-4. Georgia held on to the lead until an error allowed South Carolina to tie the set at 11. The score knotted twice before the Gamecocks took a 16-13 lead. Georgia answered with a kill and an ace to make it a one-point set at 16-15. Trailing 18-15, Eatmon found the court for a kill that sparked a 3-0 run that included back-to-back Baumert aces that tied the set at 18 and forced South Carolina to use a timeout. The Gamecocks retook a two-point lead two plays later and maintained it until a Le’au kill and a Summers ace tied the set at 24 and cause the Gamecocks to call a timeout. With the score tied at 25, an Eatmon kill gave Georgia set point before a solo block by Le’au sealed the 27-25 set three win and gave Georgia a 3-0 win over South Carolina.
Georgia gets back in action on Sunday, Oct. 13 when it travels to Gainesville, Fla., to take on the No. 2 Florida Gators. The match will begin at 2 p.m., and will be televised on CSS.