MT outlasts Charlotte, wins in five sets

Four Raiders with double-digit kills in victory

October 20, 2013 · @MTAthletics

CHARLOTTE - The Middle Tennessee volleyball team came back to force a fifth set, then rallied again to down a scrappy Charlotte team on Sunday afternoon at Halton Arena. In the win, the Blue Raiders improve to 13-7 and 5-2 in C-USA, while Charlotte falls to 10-13 and 0-8 in conference play.

Sophomore Chelsea Ross tallied 20 kills in the match, adding 13 digs for a double-double. Redshirt-junior Monet Marshall had a career-high 19 kills, while redshirt-sophomore Tyler Richardson also had a career-best with 13. Freshman Jale Hervey also had 13 kills in the match. Sophomore Shelby Anderton had a season-high 54 assists, while redshirt-junior Kendall Howard tied a career-best with 29 digs.

Charlotte took the first set 25-18, hitting .417 in the set while capitalizing on MT's .163 hitting percentage in the frame. The Blue Raiders had seven attack errors in the opening set. Charlotte took a 9-8 lead in the set and never trailed again in the frame.

MT was awoken in the second set, opening up a 4-0 lead. The Raiders would control throughout the set, hitting .625 with just one attack error. Marshall recorded seven kills on eight attacks with no errors in the frame, which the Raiders won, 25-14. Anderton had 14 assists in the second set victory.

The Blue Raiders led 21-17 in the third set before Charlotte rallied, closing the set on a 9-3 run. The 49ers scored the final four points of the frame on their way to a 26-24 victory, taking a 2-1 lead in the match. Charlotte hit .371 in the set, as opposed to a .256 clip for the Blue Raiders.

Down 2-1, the Blue Raiders answered in the fourth set. Clinging to an 11-9 lead, MT ran off an 8-2 stretch for a 19-11 advantage. Charlotte would score the next four points to cut the deficit to 19-15. It was the closest the 49ers would get in the frame, as the Raiders put them away with a 25-18 victory. Ross and Marshall each had five kills, forcing a deciding fifth set.

Charlotte took a 5-1 lead to begin the fifth set, forcing a Middle Tennessee timeout. The Raiders responded out of the stoppage, going on a 5-0 run, capped off by a thunderous solo block from redshirt-freshman Jazmyne Johnson. The 49ers tallied back-to-back points to knot the set at 10-10, and opened up the lead to 13-11 when Anderton flipped a ball over the net and off the Charlotte blocker to make it 13-12. Charlotte hit the next ball into the antenna to even the score at 13, setting up a thrilling finish.

Anderton set up Marshall for a powerful kill to bring Charlotte to match point, and on the next play a Howard dig provided an opportunity for Anderton to put one on a tee for Hervey, who sent the ball off of a Charlotte blocker and careening into the scorer's table for the kill, winning the set and match with a 15-13 victory in the fifth set.

The Blue Raiders return to action on Tuesday with a non-conference match at Alumni Memorial Gym vs. Louisville at 7 p.m. Tuesday's match vs. the Cardinals will be MT's annual Dig Pink match.

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