Tigers Split First Day of Memphis Invitational
Sep 7, 2013
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The Memphis volleyball team had their home opener Friday as they hosted the Memphis Invitational. The Tigers took on Alabama A&M University in the afternoon match and then finished the evening faced off against Western Carolina University. The Tigers started the day off with a bang, sweeping the Alabama A&M Bulldogs 3-0. Memphis returned to the court to take on the Catamounts of Western Carolina, but the Tigers would fall in a 5-set thriller.
The afternoon started off strong for Memphis, taking the first set against Alabama A&M 25-21, leading throughout. Veronica Zimmerman had two service aces in the first set, on her way to four in the game.
The Bulldogs started the second set off with improved play, tying the score up at 3-3, but quickly the Tigers pulled away, using an 8-1 run to make it 11-4 in the set. Zimmerman continued her strong game, posting another 12 assists, two kills and another ace.
The third set proved to be the best set for the Tigers. The Bulldogs stayed close early, with the score getting tied up at 9-9, but Memphis pulled away and would win the set 25-18. Junior Lauren Hawkins had three aces in the set, along with three kills. Catlin Lilly had six of her nine kills in the final set.
The Tigers took the court again later in the evening, facing off against Western Carolina, who had defeated Southeastern Louisiana University earlier in the day.
After trading points early in the set, an attack error from the Catamounts gave the Tigers an 8-7 lead in the first set. A Teivane kill stretched the lead to four points at 16-12. The Catamounts would pull within two at 17-15, but the Tigers would counter and expand the lead to 23-16 with a Teivane and Wesley block. Teivane would put down her fifth kill of the set to make it 25-18.
The teams remained close throughout the second set, with the largest lead coming at 18-14 when Hawkins scored on a service ace. The Catamounts tied things up at 23-23, but the Tigers quickly countered with kills from Hawkins and Lilly to take the set.
The Catamounts came out of the break strong in the third set, jumping out to an early 8-2 lead, only to expand it to nine points at 15-6. The Tigers pulled within two at 24-22, but the Catamounts took the set 25-22.
The fourth set remained close through, with no team leading by more than four points. The Tigers trailed by 9-5 early in the set before pulling ahead at 14-12 on a kill by Hawkins. The Catamounts countered quickly and pulled ahead 22-18. Memphis pulled within two at 23-21 but Western Carolina pulled away and took the set 25-21.
The teams entered the fifth set having each taken two sets. The Catamounts jumped out to an 8-4 lead, but the Tigers quickly tied the score at 9-9. The teams traded points all the way to 14-14, but the Catamounts scored quick back to back points to take the set and the match.
Hawkins topped out at 21 kills on the game, hitting .364 percent, while adding eight digs, an assist and a service ace. Lilly earned her third double-double of the season, with 19 kills and 14 digs. Zimmerman tallied 59 assists in the game, while adding five kills and 12 digs. Teivane earned her second double-double of the season with 11 kills and 22 digs.
The Tigers dropped to 3-2 on the season while the Catamounts approved to 5-1. Memphis returns to the court Saturday, Sept. 7 at noon when they finish up their games at the Memphis Invitational against Southeastern Louisiana.