UT on the attack.
Oct. 20, 2001
The University of Tennessee Lady Volunteer volleyball team suffered a 3-1 setback on Friday night in Columbia, S.C. against the No. 22 rated Gamecocks. South Carolina used the win to avenge the 3-0 loss it suffered against the Lady Vols on Oct. 7 when USC was ranked a season-high 17th. The Gamecocks came away with a 30-25, 20-30, 30-16, 30-26 victory as the two Eastern Division teams split their regular season series for the first time since 1993.
USC improves to 13-3 overall and 6-3 in the Southeastern Conference. Tennessee meanwhile, falls to 10-8 overall and 3-5 in league play.
Senior outside hitter Ariana Wilson led the Lady Vol charge hitting a team-high .351 and recording 19 kills. Junior outside hitter Janelle Hester also recorded double-digit kills, posting 10. Senior setter Erica Lear contributed 47 assists and eight digs to the loss while junior outside hitter Kelli Scott had nine digs and seven kills.
In the first game there were eight ties and six lead changes before USC took the lead for good at 22-21. The Gamecocks held on to take the tilt by the score of 30-25.
In the second stanza, the Gamecocks took an early 7-3 lead before UT knotted the contest at eight and surged ahead to an 11-9 lead. Steadily improving on that lead, the Lady Vols never trailed again and evened the match at one game apiece with a ten-point triumph, 30-20.
The third frame saw the match momentum return to USC as they sprinted out to an 8-1 lead with tough served on their first service. After that run, the closest Tennessee got was within five points as South Carolina brought itself with in one game of victory with a 30-16 decision.
In the final game, the two teams traded points and the lead until the tilt knotted at nine. USC broke the tie and then pushed out to a 13-9 advantage. The Lady Vols inched back, coming within two at 16-14 but South Carolina kept the pressure on and upped the lead to five at 20-15. UT came within one at 24-23 before the Gamecocks captured the next six points to seal the match.
UT will take the rest of the weekend off and be back in action on Tuesday with a non-conference match at Middle Tennessee State University. That match is set to begin at 6:30 p.m. CT. Only 33 assists away from seizing the Lady Vol career record in that category, Lear could notch that feat on Tuesday.