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Blue Raiders sweep Southeast Missouri

MT notches second consecutive three-set victory

September 20, 2013 · @MTAthletics

COLUMBIA, Mo. - A combined team effort led the Middle Tennessee volleyball team to a three-set win over Southeast Missouri on Friday in the Blue Raiders' first match of 2013 Mizzou Classic at the Hearnes Center. With the win, the Raiders improve to 7-4, while the Redhawks fall to 7-5.

Tyler Richardson led MT with 11 kills while recording a .562 (11-2-16) hitting percentage. Kristina Headrick tallied 12 digs, a new best as a Blue Raider. Chelsea Ross tied a career-high with four aces in the match.

The Blue Raiders won the first set, 25-22, with Richardson and Ross combining for eight kills. MT stormed ahead 11-4 out of the gate, spreading the attack around. Shelby Anderton, Monet Marshall, and Jale Hervey each had a kill in the opening run, with Richardson and Ross each adding two.

The Redhawks would answer, knotting the opening stanza at 19 courtesy of an 11-5 run of their own. Southeast Missouri would then get themselves into trouble, as a service error followed by two attack errors gave MT a 22-19 lead. After the two teams traded tallies, it was Richardson and Ross once again, putting the first set away with a pair of kills.

A Redhawk block brought the second set to 7-7 in the early going before MT took definitive control of the set and match. Richardson, Ross and Jazmyne Johnson rattled off kills to put the Raiders up 10-7, followed by a Headrick ace to force a Redhawk timeout at 11-7. Southeast Missouri would battle back to 12-10 before the Blue Raiders went on an 8-1 run to take a 20-11 lead. The Redhawks would claw back to 24-17 before another service error gave MT set point, and a 2-0 lead in the match.

Middle Tennessee jumped ahead to a 10-2 advantage in the third set and never looked back. A .312 hitting percentage and three early aces in the final set gave the Blue Raiders a comfortable cushion, as they cruised to a 25-18 victory in the third. Marshall had four kills in the final frame, with Hervey and Richardson each adding three.

The Blue Raiders return to action with a pair of matches Saturday at the 2013 Mizzou Classic, facing Towson at noon before squaring off with host Missouri at 6:30 p.m.

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