Sept. 25, 2009
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CLEMSON, SC – Freshman Alexa Rand recorded 15 kills in 17 attempts on the night for an .882 mark, but was unable to carry Clemson (9-4, 0-2 ACC) past the North Carolina Tar Heels (5-7, 1-0 ACC) on Friday night. The Tar Heels won 3-0 (23-25, 16-25, 16-25), hitting a staggering .431 against a Clemson team that came into the game allowing only .138 on the season.
The Tigers struggled offensively, hitting only .224 for the match. Lia Proctor, who entered the match leading the ACC in kills/set was only able to muster four on the night. North Carolina also had 45 digs, without anyone reaching double-figures. Didem Ege had 11 and Natalie Patzin had 10 to lead Clemson.
Sandra Adeleye and Rand were the bright spots on offense, as the freshmen combined for 23 kills in 33 attacks. Rand’s marks (15K-0AE-17TA, .882) are the second-best ever for a freshman and third best ever by any Clemson player in a single match.
North Carolina took the first set, 25-23. The teams traded points for much of the set before a 4-0 run gave the Tar Heels the separation they needed at 16-12. Clemson was able to close to 23-23 after a pair of Jessica Williams kills capped a 5-1 run for Clemson. However, a Branagan Fuller kill and ace between Patzin and Ege sealed the first set.
Clemson scored the first point in the second set, but the Heels responded with a 12-1, taking a big lead on relentless pressure up the middle. Clemson rattled off four straight to 12-6, but the teams traded point the rest of the way, almost all on kills, as North Carolina won 25-16.
The Tigers seemed to respond out of the break, taking a 5-3 lead early behind a pair of Patzin kills. With the score knotted at nine, North Carolina went on a 5-0 run on four Clemson errors to go up 14-9. Clemson closed to 17-14, but the Tar Heels went on an 8-2 run to finish the match, which took a little more than an hour.
The Tigers were swept for the first time since Oct. 24, 2008, a road match with North Carolina. It was the first time Clemson was swept at home since Nov. 11, 2005, also a match with the Tar Heels.
Clemson returns to action on Sunday at 1:00 pm in Jervey Gym as they play host to NC State (7-9, 0-1 ACC), who lost 3-0 to Georgia Tech on Friday night.
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