Nancy Nellans Fourth Straight Double-Double Powers Volleyball to Sweep of UAB
Nov. 5, 2004
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -
Memphis (24-7; 8-2 C-USA) 30 30 31 UAB (1-21; 0-10 C-USA) 27 22 29
The Memphis Volleyball squad capped a sweep of UAB with a 31-29 come-from-behind win in game three to improve to 24-7 overall and 8-2 in Conference USA action Friday at the Bartow Arena. Nancy Nellans posted her fourth consecutive double-double with a match-high 13 kills and 15 digs to lead Memphis, who has now won four in a row.
Game three saw UAB put up a 9-2 run to claim a 17-13 advantage midway through. The increased the lead to 24-18, before Christen Clayton's serve powered Memphis to six straight points for a 24-23 score. Memphis counteres two unanswered scores by UAB with a 4-1 run to tie the set at 27-27. UAB broke the Tiger's momentum with two consecutive points to take a 29-27 lead. With the Blazers serving for game point, Nellans put down her 12th kill of the match to pull the Tigers within a point at 29-28. A UAB attack error tied the contest at 29 and Nellans followed with another kill to give Memphis its first lead since 12-11. Melissa Nance clinched the win with a service ace.
UAB gave Memphis all it could handle in game one, erasing a six-point deficit with a 13-7 push to knot the set at 25. The Tigers were able to build a 29-26 cushion with consecutive kills from Ashley Liford and Heather Watts, followed by a service ace by Emily Steckel. Nellans put down the final kill for a 30-27 win. Neither squad played well in the first set. UAB hit just .109, but Memphis hit an even lower .102. Liford led the Tiger attack with five first-game kills.
Memphis turned up their level of play in the second frame led by Watts' 17 assists. The Tiger offense improved to a .263 clip with 20 kills, while the defense held the Blazers to .083. Nellans pounded five kills to lead Memphis, who scored 10 of the final 15 points of the game. UAB again battled to stay in the game, tying the contest at 12 before Memphis gained a six-point lead at 20-14.
Memphis struggled throughout the match and hit just .191, but was able to hold UAB to a .140 percentage on the night. Watts habded out 41 assists and hit a team-high .444 with five kills. Nance proved to the spark for the Tigers as she put down nine kills and hit .429 in a reserve role. UAB outblocked Memphis 10-2.5 in the contest. Watts and Tiara Gilkey dug 11 and 10 attacks, respectively. Gilkey is now one dig shy of becoming just the ninth Tiger volleyball player to post 1,000 kills and 1,000 digs in a career.
The Tigers will now prepare for a tough Saturday that will feature a day of travel before a 7 p.m. matchup with USF in Tampa, Fla.