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Murray State Records 3-1 Victory at Liberty
Liberty and Murray State entered the intermission tied at one set apiece at the Vines Center on Friday, before the Racers took the final two sets, for a 3-1 (25-20, 23-25, 25-19, 25-20) road victory over the Lady Flames at the Liberty Invitational.
The Racers run their season record to 4-0 entering tomorrow's action. Liberty swept Howard, 3-0, earlier on Friday, and the Lady Flames are now 4-2.
Murray State registered 68 kills, hitting .325, while the Lady Flames hit .201 with 48 kills. The guests also held an 81-61 edge in digs and 10-2 in blocks, while both teams served up four aces.
Liberty redshirt junior Caroline Douglas scored a team-high 15 kills, followed by junior Jade Vorster, who totaled 11 kills and a season-high eight digs. Junior Haley Jeffcoat collected a career-high 16 digs, and senior Gabrielle Shipe recorded 15 digs. On Friday, Shipe passed three players, and now ranks 11th in program history with 1,245 career digs. Freshman Hannah Weidner had nine kills and two aces, and junior Caila Stapleton chipped in 41 assists.
Sophomore Scottie Ingram sent down a match-high 22 kills for Murray State, to go with 16 digs. Junior Taylor Olden posted 19 kills, while redshirt sophomore Kristen Besselsen had a double-double, with 14 kills and 15 digs. Junior Sam Bedard totaled 48 assists and 17 digs, tying sophomore teammate Ellie Lorenz for the match high in digs. Junior Alyssa Lelm registered a match-high six blocks.
The Racers led the opening set from 2-1 on to the final score of 25-20, hitting .395 with 20 kills. Liberty attacked at a .238 pace during the first frame. Olden and Ingram had five kills apiece for the visitors, while Liberty's Douglas and Nzea McQuitery both recorded four kills.
Liberty responded by winning a back-and-forth second set, 25-23, one which featured 14 ties and six lead changes. The Lady Flames broke the last tie, 22-22, with a kill from Douglas. A Racer attack error made it 24-22, before Ingram sent down a kill. Douglas then sent the match to intermission tied 1-1, with a set-clinching kill.
The hosts hit .361 during set two, compared to .316 for Murray State. Ingram added seven kills, followed by five from teammate Besselsen. Douglas scored five kills for Liberty.
Murray State used an 8-3 rally to break open a tight third set, building a 21-14 lead on the way to winning, 25-19. The guests attacked at a .244 clip, posting four team blocks to help hold Liberty to a .077 attack percentage. Olden registered six kills for the Races in set three.
The visitors led the final set from start to finish, claiming the 3-1 match victory with a 25-20 set-four win.
Murray State hit .343, compared to .135 for the Lady Flames. Olden and Ingram evenly split 10 kills, while Douglas recorded four kills for Liberty. A Vorster-Weidner block brought the Lady Flames to within three, 22-19, but three rally points ensued, with Olden scoring a kill for the 25-20 victory.
The Lady Flames next face USC Upstate tomorrow at 2 p.m., during match six of the Liberty Invitational. Liberty and UNCG wrap up the weekend's tournament at 7 p.m., tomorrow in the Vines Center. Saturday's action begins at 9 a.m., when USC Upstate meets Murray State.