Volleyball bounces back with 3-1 victory at FAU

Cheatham records career-high 16 kills

October 16, 2010 · Athletic Communications
BOCA RATON, Fla. - The Middle Tennessee volleyball team rebounded from a loss on Friday with a 3-1 (27-29, 25-21, 25-13, 25-21) win over Florida Atlantic on Saturday night at FAU Gymnasium in Boca Raton, Fla.

"It was great to see our team rebound after Izabela Kozon's injury in yesterday's match," head coach Matt Peck said. "We know where we are now, and we now know we can win without one of our team's best players."

Lindsay Cheatham, a native of Deerfield Beach, Fla., had a career evening for the Blue Raiders, posting a career-high 16 kills at a blistering .652 clip. The junior middle blocker was also stellar defensively, chipping in four block assists.

Ashley Adams and Maria Szivos also reached double digits in kills, recording 15 and 12, respectively. Szivos, the defending Sun Belt Player of the Week, was also a threat in the service game with three aces. Angela Peyton put up the match-high in assists with 37. As a team, Middle Tennessee were the more efficient side offensively, hitting .271 to FAU's .124.

Brynne Henderson notched the team high in digs with 10, and Peyton was second on the team with 8. Stacy Oladinni tallied six total blocks to lead the defense at the net.

The Blue Raiders (18-5, 9-1 SBC) lost a hard-fought first set, 27-29. Middle Tennessee held on to a slim lead for much of the set, but the Owls recorded six consecutive points to go up 21-18. There would be five ties down the stretch, but FAU managed to score the frame's final two points to go up 1-0 in the match. Cheatham led the MT offense in the set, hitting .500 with six kills.

Middle Tennessee evened up the affair with a 25-21second set victory. The frame featured nine ties in the early goings before the Blue Raiders ran off five straight points to take the lead for good at 19-14. Adams posted five kills in the set to lead MT.

The Blue Raiders posted an impressive 25-13 wire-to-wire victory in the third set. Holding on to a four point lead at 13-9, Middle Tennessee ran off six of the next seven points to take a 20-10 advantage, putting the set out of reach for the Owls. Cheatham, Szivos and Brandi Waller each posted three kills in the frame as MT outhit FAU .355 to .069.

The offensive prowess continued in the fourth set, ultimately won 25-21by the Blue Raiders. Cheatham, Adams and Szivos each posted four kills in the frame, and MT once again outhit FAU, .281 to .036. The schools combined for eight ties going into the latter stages of the frame, but Middle Tennessee would inch out to a lead and hold on for a 3-1 victory.

The Blue Raiders will return home next weekend for a pair of matches, beginning with UL-Monroe on Friday at 7 p.m. and concluding with UL-Lafayette on Saturday at 7 p.m. Both matches will be played at Alumni Memorial Gym.

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