Nov. 26, 2010
ATLANTA, GA – Clemson and Georgia Tech have formed one of the most entertaining rivalries on the volleyball court, going to five sets in each of the last six matches. On Friday, it was Georgia Tech who emerged victorious (19-25, 25-18, 12-25, 25-20, 15-17) in front of their home senior-night crowd of 1,324. It was the final regular-season match for both Clemson (18-13, 9-11 ACC) and Georgia Tech (18-14, 11-9 ACC), who will are both in the top-60 of the RPI and await word on an NCAA Tournament bid on Sunday at 3:30 pm.
All-ACC middle Sandra Adeleye had 16kills and three blocks, while Alexa Rand had eight kills and ten blocks, her third effort of double-digit blocks in 2010.
Rand came in to the match ranked 10th in the nation in blocking, and will likely cement herself in the top ten with the effort. Clemson’s two Freshman All-ACC selections were key for the Tigers, with Hannah Brenner registering 48 assists, 14 digs, and four blocks for her eighth double-double of the season, while Mo Simmons, a Georgia native, had eight kills and three blocks to move over 100 for her freshman campaign.
Tech’s Monique Mead led all players with 19 kills and 21 digs, but she also registered 14 attack errors in her 55 swings. Jennifer Percy (12), Baily Hunter (12), and Asia Stawicka (11) all had double-digit kills for the Jackets, while senior setter Mary Ashley Tippins had 52 assists and 15 digs. Hunter also had a Clemson season opponent-high five aces.
Georgia Tech got on the board first with a 25-19 win in the first set. Clemson had four blocks in the set, including three from Alexa Rand, but Tech’s potent offense accounted for 19 kills, including three or more from six different players. With the score knotted at 6-6, a 7-2 run from the Jackets provided a large enough margin to hold off Clemson, who got no closer than two at 17-15.
The Tigers stormed back to knot the match at 1-1 in the second set with a 25-18 win. The Tigers scored the first six out of the gate. Adeleye put down six kills in the set, while Clemson registered another four blocks, holding the Tech offense to a .182 hitting mark. Clemson, by contrast, as 14 kills, and hit .270. Clemson led by as many as nine in the set at 18-9 and 22-13, and the closest Tech got was six at 24-18 before Patzin found a weak spot in the middle of the Tech defense for the 25th point.
The third set was all Jackets, as they came out firing with an 8-2 opening run. Clemson closed to three at 10-7, but were outscored 15-5 the rest of the way. Mead had six kills for the Yellow Jackets in the set, while Rand added three more blocks and Adeleye had three kills. Tech forced Clemson into nine attack errors, while only muster five kills for a decisive 25-12 set win.
The Tigers forced a deciding fifth set with a 25-20 win in the fourth set. Brenner guided Clemson to 19 kills and .364 hitting, registering 17 assists. Yaz and Patzin each had four kills while Adeleye had five, including the 25th point. Clemson turned a 10-7 lead into a 17-9 advantage. Tech was able to close to within four at 21-17, but a key kill from Simmons stopped the bleeding, and sent the Tigers to the set win.
In the fifth set, Tech opened a 5-1 lead behind a pair of Hunter aces and Stawicka kills. But, a Hoover timeout sent Clemson on a 5-0 run to take a 6-5 lead, mostly on Tech attack errors. The teams traded point before Tech was able to take a two-point lead at 10-8. The Jackets looked to be in control up 13-11, but the Tigers wouldn’t go away, tying the match at 13-13 on an attack error by Mead. The Tigers then fought off consecutive match points but Tech wouldn’t budge, continuing to side out. After an attack from Yaz went just long, Percy ended the match with a kill down the left side.
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