Deckard Records 23 Kills in Loss at Sun Belt TouranmentNovember 20, 2003 · MT Media Relations
In game one, Western Kentucky went on a 7-0 run after the game was tied 1-1 and the Lady Raiders could never really come back. The team did hold the Lady Toppers through two points on game point but eventually dropped game one 30-24.
Middle Tennessee took the lead for the first time in the match in game two when the Lady Raiders took the lead 2-1 to start the game. Five lead changes pushed the game to 28 all when the Lady Toppers pulled ahead to take the game when the Lady Raiders were called for a net violation and then an attack error on game point to take game two.
The Lady Raiders came out of the locker room in game three on fire as the Lady Raiders relied heavily on the swinging ability of juniors Dara McLean and KeKe Deckard who each had nine kills in the game.
Middle Tennessee was dealt a blow when the game was tied 29-29 and McLean left the game with an injury. Freshman Allison Liptak replaced McLean and played a strong game down the stretch. Senior Karisse Baker gave Middle Tennessee a one point advantage with a kill and Deckard gave the Lady Raiders the match with a kill on the right side.
"Dara was playing great before the injury," said head coach Lisa Kissee. "Allison did a good job coming in for Dara, and Victoria [Monasterolo] played well on the right side, a position she isn't used to playing."
Middle Tennessee struggled in game four, but the Lady Raiders did manage to tie the game 16 all before giving up six unanswered points. Fighting back, the Lady Raiders won two more points with the Lady Toppers sitting on match point before dropping game four 30-23.
Deckard led all scorers with 23 kills in the match and Baker and McLean each had 11. Setter Goldie Bilyeu had 49 assists and 13 digs for her second double-double of the season.
"This team never gave up and I am proud of them for that," Kissee said. "We started the season with two freshman setters, the only team in the conference to do so, and that is a credit to this team."
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