Gamecocks Drop Three-Set Decision at No. 20 Kentucky
Nov. 8, 2013
LEXINGTON, Ky. -- The South Carolina volleyball team fell in three sets at No. 20 Kentucky on Friday by the scores of 25-17, 25-15 and 25-19 at Memorial Coliseum.
With the loss, the Gamecocks fall to 12-12 on the season and 3-8 in the SEC. The Wildcats improve to 17-6 overall and 9-3 in league play.
The Gamecocks were missing two key members of their lineup on Friday, as senior outside hitter Juliette Thévenin (illness) and sophomore setter Kellie McNeil (foot) did not play. In their absence, sophomore middle blocker Darian Dozier led the way with six kills while hitting .417 and three blocks. Freshman middle blocker Jacqy Angermiller added five kills and two solo blocks. Freshman outside hitter Dessaa Legros tallied five kills, while sophomore right side Sarah Blomgren chipped in four kills. Making her first career start, freshman setter Helen Récaborde distributed 22 assists and had one kill. Junior Michaela Christiaansen and freshman Gabrielle Rubeis collected 11 digs apiece in the loss.
South Carolina finished the night with an edge in digs (35-34), while Kentucky held an advantage in hitting (.269-.061), kills (47-23) and blocks (6-5). Freshman outside hitter Annie Thomasson paced the Wildcats with a match-high 12 kills, while senior right side Whitney Billings and sophomore middle blocker Kayla Tronick contributed nine kills apiece. Sophomore setter Morgan Bergren finished with 38 assists, and junior libero Jackie Napper had 10 digs.
The Gamecocks fell behind 4-0 early, as Thomasson delivered three kills for the Wildcats to spark the strong start. South Carolina scrapped back with a 5-3 run to pull to within 7-5 on a kill by Blomgren, but Kentucky went on an 8-3 run to build a 15-8 lead. The Gamecocks pulled to within 20-15 late on a kill by Angermiller off of a Récaborde set. However, the Wildcats outscored South Carolina 5-2 down the stretch to win the set.
South Carolina trailed the Wildcats 3-0 early in the second set but went on a 3-1 run capped by a Kentucky attack error to pull to within a point. But Kentucky took control of the set with a 9-2 run on its way to winning the set 25-15.
Kentucky jumped out to an 11-4 lead in the third set, but the Gamecocks fought back with a 5-2 run, including a pair of kills by Legros, to cut the Wildcats' lead to 13-9. However, that was as close as South Carolina was able to get, as Kentucky went on to win the set 25-19.
The Gamecocks will be back in action on Sunday at Georgia. First serve is set for 1:30 p.m. in Athens, Ga.