Volleyball Wins Eighth Straight
Sept. 18, 2003
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The University of Memphis volleyball team (11-1) won its eighth straight match, Thursday, 3-1, at Birmingham Southern College to open the BSC Tournament. Memphis won by game scores of 30-19, 30-16, 19-30, and 30-14.
A trio of Tigers downed double digit kills in the win, led by 16 from senior Brittany Barnett (Dallas, Texas/Lake Highlands) and 16 from sophomore Nancy Nellans (South Bend, Ind./St. Joseph). Nellans also led the team with a career-high 21 digs and Barnett moved with 16 kills of her 1,000th career kill, while Nellans is just two shy of her 500th career kill.. Junior Tiara Gilkey (Creve Coeur, Mo./Pattonsville) added 13 kills and two service aces in the win.
Memphis dominated games one and two, holding Birmingham Southern to hitting percentages of .056 and .075 in games one and two, respectively. Memphis hit a game-high .300 in game two, but as BSC stepped up its blocking game and eliminated serving errors, the Panther offense found its grove, hitting .469 in game three compared to a .108 from Memphis. BSC committed just two service errors in the third game after recording 10 errors in the first two games.
But the Tigers seized the momentum again in game four, breaking a 7-7 tie and never relinquishing the lead before closing out the match, 30-14, in game four.
Four Tigers added double-digit digs, including Nellans' career-high 21. Gilkey added 16 digs, while freshman libero Christen Clayton (Houston, Texas/Clear Lake) added 11. Barnett added 10 digs for her fifth double-double of the season. Freshman middle Melissa Nance (Frankfort, Ind./Prairie View) and Barnett led the blocking game with three total blocks.
Memphis will face either North Carolina State or Wofford, Friday, at 2 p.m. North Carolina State did not make it out of Raleigh before the hurricane came ashore in North Carolina and are waiting to see if they can catch a 6 a.m. flight out of Raleigh, Friday morning. If the Wolfpack cannot make it to Birmingham, the Tigers will face Wofford at 2 p.m.