Gamecocks Fall in Three at Texas A&M
Oct. 5, 2012
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - South Carolina fell in three sets at Texas A&M (13-2, 5-1 SEC) on Friday night, as the Aggies took the frames 25-12, 25-16, 25-16 in front of 1,318 fans at Reed Arena.
Lindsey Miller posted a match-best 12 kills for the Aggies, while Alisia Kastmo added 10 kills. Megan Pendergast had 10 digs, while Stephanie Minnerly and Tori Mellinger both contributed three blocks. Allie Sawatzki had 33 assists, six digs and two kills.
Gamecock sophomore outside hitter Bethanie Thomas led the team with five kills and five digs, tying in the latter category with senior setter Taylor Bruns, who also had 16 assists. Redshirt freshman opposite Christina Vereb had three blocks, one of those solo, to go with four kills.
Tied 3-3 after a block from South Carolina redshirt sophomore middle blocker Cara Howley and Vereb, Texas A&M took control en route to a 25-12 set-one win. An 11-2 stand that followed the Gamecock block made the difference, with Heather Reynolds posting two aces in the six-point run in the middle. The Aggies ended the frame with a six-point skein, as Mellinger ended it with a smash down the line. The Aggies hit .400 in the first frame, led by Mellinger's and Miller's four kills each.
The Aggies claimed the second set, 25-16. A five-point run gave Texas A&M the cushion it needed, with kills coming from Angela Lowak, Mellinger and Sawatzki in the string that made it 10-5 Aggies. Texas A&M's lead grew to 22-13 until South Carolina posted a three-point stand, all Aggie errors. A Gamecock attacking error ended the frame at 25-16. Texas A&M hit .424 in the second, led by four kills from Alisia Kastmo, Stephanie Minnerly and Mellinger.
A 7-2 stretch helped Texas A&M to a match-clinching 25-16 win in the third set. The stand, powered by two Kastmo kills, broke a 7-7 tie. South Carolina played a younger lineup in the final frame, getting three kills from freshman Sarah Blomgren and two from freshman Jenna Allen in the final stanza.
The Aggies won every statistical category, including a .364-.078 difference in hitting percentage.
The Gamecocks head to Baton Rouge for a 2 p.m. EDT contest against the LSU Tigers on Sunday.