Volleyball Makes Late Surge for 3-2 Come-from-Behind Win over Southern Miss
Oct. 28, 2005
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -
Southern Miss (6-12; 0-9 C-USA) 30 30 30 15 8 Memphis (15-11; 6-3 C-USA) 23 25 32 30 15
Memphis overcame a two-game deficit and put on a strong three-game surge to hold off Southern Miss and remain unbeaten at home this season in a 3-2 win. Shelby Burton and Fehi Tuivai both hammered 14 kills for the Tigers, while Ashley Liford downed 13. Memphis, who has won 10-straight at home, is now 9-0 at home this year.
Memphis completed the comeback with a strong effort in the final game that saw three kills by Burton power the Tigers to a quick 4-0 lead. A kill by Laura Côté extended the lead to 8-2, before assisted blocks by Tuivai and Melissa Nance capped a match-ending three-point rally. Memphis finished strong, hitting .750 in the final frame, with just one error. Burton nailed four of her 14 kills in the deciding game.
After falling behind 2-0, the Tigers found themselves in danger of being swept and trailed 23-16 deep into the set. However, reserve Colette Ramirez provided Memphis with a spark, recording a block, a pair of kills and a service to fuel a 6-1 Tiger run that cut the deficit to two points, 24-22. Côté then downed a kill and served up two aces to tie the contest at 27. A kill by Burton put Memphis ahead, 31-30 and a Golden Eagle error gave kept the Tigers alive with a game three victory.
The U of M offense began to show its normal strength with a strong game four performance to even the match. USM took and early 7-3 lead, but Memphis would not be denied and scored the next nine points to claim a commanding 14-9 advantage. The Tigers finished the set off with an 8-0 run that saw Christen Clayton post three aces, while Liford downed three kills.
The Tigers came out of the gates sluggishly, and hit just .099 through the first two games. USM took charge with an 18-7 surge to take a 1-0 lead and held Memphis to -.023 hitting. Game two was more of the same as Memphis again posted a sub-.100 average and saw a five-point lead evaporate after a 7-2 Golden Eagle run.
Memphis got a match-high 17 digs from Clayton, while Kori Smith provided a defensive lift with a career-best 10 digs. Nancy Nellans had a tough night, with six kills, but gave the Tigers 14 digs in a solid defensive outing. Memphis outdug USM 62-52. Côté had a career-best eight kills to go with 56 assists.
Amber Bloom led all players with 15 kills, while Jazzmien Stephens posted 10 kills for Southern Miss.
Memphis will now prepare for a Sunday afternoon matchup with C-USA newcomer UCF. Match time is slated for 1 p.m.