Tiger Volleyball Splits Pair in Final Day of BYU Mizuno Classic
Sept. 12, 2004
PROVO, Utah-- - After a slow start and a Game one loss, the Memphis volleyball team bounced back to dominate play in the next three games to claim a 3-1 win over UCF (0-5) in the BYU Mizuno Classic Saturday afternoon. The Tigers were then swept by Utah Valley State in their final match of the tournament. Senior Tiara Gilkey received All-tournament honors for Memphis, who went 1-3 on the weekend to finish in fourth place. Oklahoma went undefeated en route to claiming to tournament title.
In the win over UCF, Memphis (6-2) was led by Gilkey's season-high 20 kills, while freshman Ashley Liford slammed a career-high 15 kills and Melissa Nance posted 10 kills.
Gilkey added a game-high 13 digs for her second double-double in three matches and Heather Watts posted a double-double with a game-high 54 assists and 10 digs.
UCF hit .313 and never trailed in the first game, 30-27 win. Memphis managed to tie the contest on four occassions, but could never capture the lead as the Golden Knights outscored them 8-5 to finish the game. Liford hit a blistering .833, with five kills in the game.
Memphis came to life in the second game, taking its first lead of the match at 8-7 after a Kristen Hardee kill. The Tiger offense scored 17 of the next 25 points to take their largest lead of the game at 22-15. UCF cut the lead to 24-20, but a service error and an unassisted kill by Gilkey pushed the lead back to six as the Tigers went on to take Game two, 30-25.
Memphis lead for the majority of the third set, but a 3-0 run capped by a Golden Knights service ace gave UCF a 22-21 advantage. However, the Tigers would get a Watts' assisted kill by Nance to regain the lead at 23-22. Memphis never trailed again and led by as much as four, 28-24, after Shelby Burton smashed her sixth kill of the contest. Gilkey would finish the game off with a powerful kill to give Memphis the 30-27 win.
Memphis took total control of the match from a young UCF squad and finished the fourth and final game with a 23-12 run to take a 30-18 win.
The Tigers set season-highs for kills (72), assists (62), digs (56), block assists (16) and total blocks (10.0) in the match.
After hitting .222 in the first frame, the Tiger offense finished the game at a .318 clip. Hardee had a season-high nine kills and 10 digs, while Watts also added a season-high with seven scoring attacks. Defensive specialist Emily Steckel had 10 kills for the Tiger defense.
UCF was led by Tanya Jarvis and Emily Watts, who had 12 kills each. Katie Kohnen and Michelle Spaleta both had 10 digs.
The Tigers performed sluggishly against UVSC, leading just once in the entire match. UVSC stymied the Tigers offense, holding it to just a .119 attacking percentage, while piling up an opponent's season-high 51 digs and eight total blocks. The Wolverine offense had its way with Memphis, hitting .336 led by Jessica Endres' 17 kills and Deise Borghetti's 10 spikes.
Gilkey led Memphis with her second consecutive double-double with a team-high 15 kills and 13 digs. Nancy Nellans also added 11 digs in a losing effort.
Memphis returns home for a doubleheader against Central Arkansas and Arkansas State on Tues., Sept. 14. The Tigers will play UCA at 4 p.m. before taking on ASU at 7 p.m. at the Elma Roane Fieldhouse.