Volleyball Falls 3-2 at UAB
Oct. 10, 2005
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Memphis (11-8; 3-1 C-USA) 26 30 30 24 11 UAB (11-3; 2-2 C-USA) 30 27 27 30 15
Two days after sweeping UAB, the University of Memphis volleyball team was unable to hold A 2-1 advantage in a 3-2 loss to UAB Sunday afternoon at Bartow Arena. The loss was the first C-USA setback for the Tigers. UAB surpasses its 2004 league win total with the win.
Memphis never got into a rhythm in the match and that proved true in the final set as UAB grabbed a 5-3 lead early on. From there the Tigers were able to cut the UAB lead to one point, 8-7, before the Blazers took total command with a 4-1 push.
A sluggish Tiger team came out in game one and found themselves trailing 9-6 after consecutive service aces by the Blazers. UAB used a three-point run to increase its lead to 15-9 halfway through the set. Another reception error by the Tigers and a pair of Blazer kills highlighted a 5-1 push that put UAB ahead by eight, 25-17. Memphis was never able to recover from the deficit in a 30-26 loss.
After taking a 5-3 lead in the second game, Memphis gave up five consecutive points as UAB claimed an 8-4 advantage. A service ace by Christen Clayton evened the slate at 9-9 and another ace by Melissa Nance tied the score 14-14. Memphis claimed control of the second game with a 5-1 surge that was wrapped up by a service ace from Nancy Nellans. The Tigers went up by seven points, 26-19, after Nellans ripped down her eighth kill of the afternoon.
Memphis mistakes helped UAB make an 8-0 run to take a 27-26 lead. However, that would be the last point the Tigers would give the Blazers as Nance stopped the UAB run with a kill and block assists by Tuivai and Colette Ramirez helped Memphis regain the lead, 28-27. A kill by Ramirez followed by Nance¹s third ace finished off a 4-0 run by the Tigers in a tough 30-27 game two triumph. Memphis hit just .122 in the second set.
Consecutive blocks by the UAB defense gave them a 14-11 lead, but a kill by Clayton and a service ace by Nellans on successive plays cut Memphis¹ deficit to 15-14. Memphis erased a 20-16 UAB lead with a four-point run that was highlighted by a pair of block assists by the U of M defense. Nance and Ramirez teamed up on the first, while Nance and Nellans rejected the second straight UAB attempt to close the gap to 20-19. A Blazer error tied the set at 20 and Memphis finally controlled the lead at 23-22 after an unassisted kill by Tuivai. UAB battled and used a 4-1 surge to take a 27-26 lead. But for the second game in a row, the Tigers were able to hold the Blazers scoreless in the final moments of the game, while a game-winning 4-0 run.
Ashley Liford began the rally with a kill and combined with Nance on assisted blocks to take a 28-27 lead. Liford¹s 11th put-away gave Memphis 29-27 cushion. Nance and Ramirez wrapped up the 30-27 win with assisted blocks. The Tigers had nine total blocks in the third set, which overcame a dismal .029 hitting clip. The strong block held UAB to just .100 hitting.
Four straight scores by the Blazers gave them a 20-14 game-three lead. The Tigers responded with a strong 6-1 push to cut the UAB lead to just one point at 20-21. The U of M could get no closer as UAB won each of the next six points to take go ahead 28-21.
Liford led Memphis with 16 kills, while Nellans posted a double-double of 13 kills and 16 digs. Christen Clayton and Kristen Hardee also reached double figures in digs with 14 and 11, respectively. Nance was strong at the net for Memphis, finishing with seven block assists. Ramirez and Liford had four assisted blocks each.
Memphis was outplayed in nearly category of the match. UAB maintained a 74-55 advantage in kills, and 68-52 in the assists department. Memphis committed 11 reception errors and added 11 service miscues in the loss.
The Tigers will now travel to Nashville, Tenn. to take on Belmont on Tues., Oct. 11. Match time is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Memphis defeated Belmont 3-2 in season-opener at the Arkansas Invitational on August 26.