Spartanburg, S.C. – The USC Upstate volleyball team received a match-high 17 kills from Kayla Eversgerd as it defeated the Kennesaw State Owls in straight sets, 3-0, Tuesday evening at the G.B. Hodge Center.
Upstate won the match by scores of 25-21, 25-22 and 25-12.
Eversgerd teamed up with Emily Koelling for a combined 27 kills as the Spartans won their second straight home match in three sets. Koelling finished with 10 kills on the night, and Alexa Lagaly just missed her second double-double of the season with nine kills and 10 digs. Lexi Gober posted 30 kills and seven digs to the effort, while Amanda Carroll added 10 assists. Morgan Page finished with 20 digs.
Upstate controlled the match in all facets as it out-hit Kennesaw State .336 to .078, and totaled 47 kills to the Owls' 32.
The Spartans won a hard-fought opening set, which featured seven ties and four lead changes, 25-21. Upstate captured the opening five points on four Kennesaw State attack errors to lead 5-0. The Spartans held the lead until midway through the set when KSU tied it at 13-13 following Eversgerd's attack error. The two teams remained tied for the next several points until Upstate took a 19-17 lead after kills from Koelling and Eversgerd. The Owls took their first lead of the match at 21-20, but the Spartans tied it at 21 the next play. From there, Upstate won the next four points to take the set victory.
The second set had six more ties as the Spartans earned another close win at 25-22. Upstate led throughout the opening points and held a 9-5 advantage after an attack error by KSU's Toure Hopkins. Kennesaw State answered back with an 8-2 run to take a two-point lead at 13-11. The Spartans rallied to tie the set 15-15 following a kill from Shannon Weiss. Upstate posted a 5-1 run to lead 20-16 but the Owls cut their deficit to 23-21 following Kelly Marcinek's kill. Weiss would win the set for the Spartans on her kill.
Despite falling behind 2-0 to start the third set, Upstate would cruise to a 25-12 victory and win the match. The Spartans collected the next four points to lead 4-2 and never looked back from there. Upstate posted a 16-3 run midway through the set to stretch its lead to 21-8 capped off by four consecutive kills from Eversgerd and Koelling. The Spartans would take the set on Camille Pedraza's attack error.
Marcinek and Cierra Royster each tallied 10 kills to lead the Kennesaw State offense.
Upstate hits the road for one match this weekend as it travels to face East Tennessee State Friday, Oct. 25 at 7 p.m.
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