SFA’s Season Ends with 3-0 Loss at Ole Miss in Opening Round of NIVC

first_imgOXFORD, Miss. – Engaging in its first postseason match in over a decade, the Stephen F. Austin volleyball team was unable to slow down a strong attack plan by Ole Miss and dropped a 3-0 decision to the Rebels in the opening round of the National Invitational Volleyball Championship (NIVC) Wednesday night at the Gillom Center. Stopping the Ole Miss duo of Kate Gibson and Lexi Thompson was far easier said than done as the pair combined for 28 of the Rebels’ 47 terminations throughout the evening. As a team, Ole Miss hit at a rate of .300 and try as they might the Ladyjacks were unable to match that efficiency on the offensive end. Danae Daron posted a team-best nine kills while Haley Coleman added eight for SFA which finished with a hitting percentage of only .103 – its lowest of the season – in its season-ending setback. Defensively, Makenzee Hanna amassed six rejections to lead all players while Ann Hollas added three blocks to go along with three kills and 15 assists. Freshman Margaret Dean stepped in and dished out 13 helpers to tie her season high. Charging out of the games in their first postseason match since 2010, the Rebels never trailed in the opening frame and drilled SFA with an 11-2 run to start the Southland/SEC showdown. The Ladyjacks managed to recover and posted five of the next seven points to cut the Ole Miss advantage to 13-7.Through that SFA run, Daron and Hollas delivered kills while Redmond served up the Ladyjacks’ lone ace of the match. A solo rejection by Hanna kept SFA within six, 14-8, before the Rebels’ offense squashed the Ladyjacks hopes of jumping out to a 1-0 lead. Ole Miss pounded down eight of their 15 kills in the set during an 11-4 run to close out the frame. Through the first set, SFA hit just .000 while the Rebels attacked at a strong .464 clip.Ole Miss broke a 1-1 tie early in the second by pounding down three more kills during a 4-0 run but the Ladyjacks rediscovered their accuracy on the offensive end to give the Rebels a run for their money.Daron, Evans and Hollas each smacked down kills during a 6-2 SFA surge while the duo of Hanna and Hollas sprung for a block to tie things at 7-7 before another flurry of offense by Ole Miss put the home team in front for the remainder of the frame. Three more kills and an SFA error pushed the Rebels ahead 11-7 and while SFA made it a two-point margin twice during the middle portion of the set, Ole Miss answered with points each time to reestablish a three-point lead. Facing set point and trailing by five, SFA received back-to-back terminations from Hanna before a solo block from Gibson finished off the set and put the host institution up 2-0.  The only lead SFA took in the match came when Daron and Coleman combined for a rejection to start the third set. From there, Ole Miss reeled off five straight points and would never fall behind again.Getting kills from Xariah Williams and Coleman as well as a combo block from Hanna and Hollas, the visitors battled back to knot matters at 5-5, but Ole Miss responded in a big way by going on an 8-0 run to open up a 13-5 lead. Although the Ladyjacks attempted a comeback by getting kills from Xariah Williams, Redmond and Coleman as part of a 5-1 run that trimmed the Rebels’ lead to 19-16, the Ole Miss lead proved to be insurmountable. Ole Miss closed out the match with a 5-2 run that featured two more kills and the Rebels’ second service ace of the evening. SFA’s season may have come to a close, but there were still plenty of highlights to be had throughout 2017. The Ladyjacks captured their ninth Southland Conference regular sesaon title and posted 26 wins – the most by the team since 2007. Cain – one of two seniors on the team along with Sam Rodriguez – closed out her collegiate career with 1,624 digs which stands as the fourth-most in the history of the program.last_img read more

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