Calloway Records 350th Win, USC Upstate Tops Savannah State in GATA Challenge Finale

Calloway Records 350th Win, USC Upstate Tops Savannah State in GATA Challenge Finale

Box Score (.pdf)

Statesboro, Ga. – USC Upstate head coach Jennifer Calloway reached a career milestone on Saturday morning with her 350th career victory as the Spartan volleyball team wrapped up play at the GATA Challenge with a 3-2 win over the Savannah State Tigers at Hanner Fieldhouse.

USC Upstate improves to 3-10 on the season while Savannah State falls to 1-10 overall.

The Spartans won the match by scores of 14-25, 25-16, 18-25, 25-19 and 15-8.


  • With the win, Calloway ties Joe Bowman (1978-87, 1995) for the most wins in program history with 350.
  • USC Upstate hit over .200 for the fourth time this season after posting a team percentage of .226.
  • The Spartans held a 64-62 advantage in digs while both teams recorded 48 kills.
  • USC Upstate also registered 5.0 total team blocks.
  • Payton Duncan led the Spartans offensively with 13 kills and added nine digs.
  • Lily Dempsey contributed 10 kills.
  • Dylan Herb, making her first collegiate start, collected her first career double-double on 36 assists and 22 digs.
  • Karissa Tatum had a team-high 12 kills for the Tigers.
  • Ashley Jordan compiled 28 assists and Leiri Melendez 20 digs.
  • The match featured 13 ties and five lead changes.


  • Set One:  Savannah State opened by scoring the first seven points and led 7-0 following back-to-back blocks. Salma Gonzalez kept the Tigers ahead by seven, 11-4, with her kill. USC Upstate answered with a 10-3 run and trailed 14-11 when Dempsey and Emily Russell teamed up for a block. The Spartans would be held to three points the rest of the way as Savannah State finished the set on an 11-3 run and won 25-14 off a service ace.
  • Set Two:  USC Upstate came back to win the second set 25-16 and even the match at 1-1. The Spartans began by posting a 5-1 run and led by four off a Tiger attack error. Dempsey pushed USC Upstate's lead out to 10-4 several plays later with her kill. Russell made the score 14-7 after connecting on a kill. Savannah State came back with an 8-2 run and cut the lead down to 16-15. The Spartans held the Tigers to just one point after that, finishing on a 9-1 run for the 25-16 victory on Mackenzie Marcum's service ace.
  • Set Three:  The teams traded the first 12 points when McKenna Kirkpatrick tied the score at 6-6 with her kill. Savannah State followed with seven straight points and led 13-6 off a kill. The Tigers led by seven points two more times with the last coming at 19-12. USC Upstate got as close as three, 19-16, after registering four consecutive points capped by a Savannah State attack error. The Tigers concluded the set on a 6-2 run to win 25-18.
  • Set Four:  Mackenzie Lauer tied the set for the Spartans early at 5-5 with her kill. The score would be tied several times until midway when back-to-back kills from Lauer gave USC Upstate a 16-14 lead. After Savannah State cut its deficit to 17-15, the Spartans responded with a 6-2 run and went in front 23-17 on Marcum's service ace. Duncan won the set for USC Upstate at 25-19 with her kill.
  • Set Five:  Russell gave the Spartans an early 5-2 lead on her service ace. The Tigers would then trim the lead down to 6-4 but USC Upstate answered with another 5-2 run and held an 11-6 advantage off a Savannah State attack error. The Spartans scored the final three points to take the set 15-8 and win the match 3-2.


  • USC Upstate returns to the G.B. Hodge Center for the first of three straight games beginning on Tuesday, Sept. 18 when they open conference play against High Point at 6 p.m.

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