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Blue Raiders fall to fourth-ranked Illinois

Adams tallied 13 kills in loss

September 9, 2011 · Athletic Communications
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Ashley Adams posted another impressive offensive performance, but it wasn't enough as the Middle Tennessee volleyball team fell to No. 4 Illinois 3-0 (21-25, 16-25, 18-25) on Friday evening in the Middle Tennessee Invitational opener at Alumni Memorial Gym.

Adams hit .385 with a team-high 13 kills to go along with three digs and a pair of block assists.

Oyinlola Oladinni and Brandi Waller each chipped in another seven kills with Oladinni registering a .700 attack percentage for the match.

However, the Illini held the advantage offensively, out-hitting the Blue and White .392 to .189 and posting 15 more kills, marking the first time an opponent has tallied more kills than Middle Tennessee this season.

Defensively, Brynne Henderson recorded a match-high 12 digs, and Lindsay Cheatham tallied two block solos and four block assists.

Middle Tennessee gave the Fighting Illini their strongest test in the opening set, but ultimately U of I took advantage of a pair of late runs to seal the deal for a 25-21 victory. After the Blue Raiders battled back from an early deficit to even things up at 16-16, Illinois utilized a pair of Jackie Wolfe service aces en route to grabbing a 20-16 advantage, forcing a Middle Tennessee timeout.

The Blue Raiders were able follow up with a rally, cutting the deficit back to one at 20-19, but the Fighting Illini reeled off five of the ensuing seven points, winning on an Erin Johnson kill.

After using an early run to grab a 25-16 second set victory, Illinois out-hit the Blue Raiders .455 to .065 to win the third and final frame 25-18.

Middle Tennessee will continue play at the event on Saturday. Beginning with Tulsa at 10 a.m. before taking on Cal Poly at 7 p.m.

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