Memphis Volleyball Sweeps Marshall In C-USA Action
Sept. 25, 2011
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - A strong defensive presence helped the Memphis volleyball team improve to 2-1 in Conference USA play and 13-3 overall with a 3-0 (25-22, 25-21, 25-21) win over Marshall on Sunday.
The Tigers held Marshall to .227 hitting thanks in part to five team blocks and 40 digs. Junior Vesna Jelic posted a team-high 10 digs while junior Marija Jovanovic and freshman Aleksandra Petronijevic each tallied nine. Junior Altrese Hawkins paced the Tiger offense with 14 kills. Senior Cameron Yoho led the Thundering Herd with a double-double of 11 digs and 10 kills.
Memphis got off to a strong start in set one with the first three points going to the home team. Hawkins had two early kills to help the Tigers jump out to a 7-3 lead. However, Marshall scored five of the next seven points after finding its offensive rhythm and was finally able to tie the score at 11-11. But the Tiger defense came up big with a powerful block from Lauren Hawkins and Hajnalka Molnar to prevent the Herd from taking the lead. The two teams stayed tight from there with Memphis maintaining a slight advantage but feeling constant pressure from the Herd. That pressure finally paid off for Marshall as it took the lead 19-18 after three straight kills. But the advantage was short-lived as Altrese Hawkins took over the set and powered home four kills in the final seven points to give Memphis the 25-22 win. Hawkins finished the frame with seven kills on .455 hitting.
Set two began the same way as set one, with an early Memphis lead and a powerful attack led by Hawkins. But Marshall quickly got into sync and scored three straight points to go up 5-4. After falling behind, 9-6, the Tigers began making their move, putting together a 5-1 run featuring two aces to regain the lead at 11-10. The Herd tied the score once and had several other opportunities to even the tally, but Memphis stayed strong and took the set, 25-21.
With the Tigers sensing victory and Marshall trying to stay in the match, set three was tight from the opening serve. The Herd used a 3-0 spurt to go in front 9-6 only to see Memphis respond with a 7-1 run to build a 13-10 lead. The advantage quickly became 18-12 as the Tigers stayed on the attack, eventually scoring the 25-21 victory.
The Tigers will now get ready for their first conference road trip as they head to Southern Miss on Friday and Tulane on Sunday in C-USA action.