Gamecocks Sweep Coastal Carolina Behind Strong Offense
Oct. 16, 2012
CONWAY, S.C. - Behind a strong offensive outing led by double-doubles from senior setter Taylor Bruns and junior outside hitter Juliette Thévenin, South Carolina (14-7) swept past Coastal Carolina (7-11) 25-22, 25-16, 25-13, on Tuesday evening at the HTC Center.
Thévenin led all players with 14 kills and added 12 digs, while Bruns posted 37 assists and 12 digs. Junior libero Paige Wheeler had 13 digs and two aces to lead the Gamecocks. Redshirt sophomore Cara Howley added eight kills on a .500 hitting percentage and a match-high four block assists, and Bruns hit .462 with six kills.
Eszter Nagy topped Coastal with nine kills. Sam Skryd had 13 digs for the Chanticleers.
The Gamecocks used a 9-2 stand to come back and take the first set, 25-22. Howley, Thomas and Thévenin all had three kills in the stretch that gave South Carolina the 18-16 lead. Coastal retook the lead briefly after two kills from Nagy at 19-18, but the Gamecocks finished the frame with a 6-2 run, punctuated by Wheeler's ace. Thévenin had eight kills in the first set, part of the 20 the Gamecocks recorded in the frame. Wheeler added nine digs as well.
A 6-1 stand helped South Carolina take the second set, 25-16. That string made it 20-13 and included two Gamecock blocks, half of the squad's total in the set. Bruns ended the set with her third kill of the set, a dump that found a spot inside the line. Thévenin had five more kills in the second, and Thomas added four.
South Carolina powered past Coastal in the third set, 25-13. The longest skein of the match came late in the frame, a seven-point streak that made it 23-11 in favor of the Gamecocks. Freshman outside hitter Jenna Allen had two kills in the stretch. Howley closed the frame with a kill down the block at 25-13. The Gamecocks hit .500 in the final set while holding Coastal to a .031 mark.
The Gamecocks and Chanticleers tied with two aces each, and South Carolina won the other stat categories, including a .349-.150 advantage in hitting percentage.
The Gamecocks head to the Magnolia State for the weekend SEC matches, starting with Friday night's contest at Mississippi State. First serve is set for 7 p.m. CDT at Humphrey Coliseum in Starkville, Miss.