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Raiders down Towson in three-set win

MT wins third straight match, all in three sets

September 21, 2013 · @MTAthletics

COLUMBIA, Mo. - The Middle Tennessee volleyball team won its third straight match with another three-set victory, defeating Towson to open the second day of the 2013 Mizzou Classic at the Hearnes Center. With the win, the Blue Raiders improve to 8-4, while the Tigers fall to 5-11.

Jale Hervey led MT with 12 kills, while Jazmyne Johnson notched a career-best eight. Tyler Richardson had seven blocks in the match. The Blue Raiders hit .299 during the match, including two sets in which they hit .312 or better.

Middle Tennessee played a fairly clean first set, hitting .433 (17-4-30) with Hervey's seven kills leading the way. The Raiders took a 6-5 lead and stayed on top for the remainder of the set, but were unable to distance themselves from the Tigers. The first attack error of the match for MT brought Towson to within 14-12, with the lead fluctuating between two and four points until the Blue Raiders brought the Tigers to set point at 24-19. Towson would claw back to 24-21 before Hervey capped off the set with a kill.

Towson held a 9-8 lead in the second set before MT rattled off an 8-0 run to jump ahead 16-9. Shelby Anderton tallied two aces during the stretch, giving the Raiders their most convincing advantage of the match. The Tigers would answer back with a 6-0 run of their own to cut the deficit to one.

Towson took Middle Tennessee to set point at 24-23, and the Blue Raiders answered the call. Rachel Shaughnessy knotted the set at 24 with a kill before combining with Monet Marshall on a block. On the next point, Anderton came up with a set-clinching ace, her third service ace of the set.

The Blue Raiders made things difficult for themselves in the third set, recording seven service errors. Meanwhile, the Tigers found themselves unable to distance themselves, hitting .200 and tallying three inopportune ball handling errors. Neither team held a lead of more than two points throughout the entirety of the final set, with the Tigers leading 20-19, looking to extend the match beyond the minimum.

Middle Tennessee would score the next two points off a Chelsea Ross kill and a Towson error to take a 21-20 lead before the Tigers re-tied the set at 21. Another well-timed Ross kill and Towson error would give MT a 23-21 lead, and the Raiders would bring the Tigers to match point at 24-22. After a Towson kill, Hervey came up with her final kill of the afternoon, set up by Anderton, to take the set and match.

After dropping their first four three-set matches of the year, the Blue Raiders have won each of their last three matches in three-set fashion.

Middle Tennessee returns to action Saturday night at the 2013 Mizzou Classic, facing host Missouri of the SEC at 6:30 p.m.

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