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Chanticleers Hold Off Liberty for 3-1 Win
Liberty battled to extend Saturday's match with a set-three victory, before Coastal Carolina sealed a 3-1 win (25-22, 26-24, 20-25, 25-18) over the Lady Flames at The HTC Center.
As a result of today's match, Liberty (15-7) and Coastal Carolina (7-10) are now tied in Big South standings with identical 5-2 conference records. Liberty had won three straight matches prior to its first-ever trip to The HTC Center, Saturday.
Liberty recorded 48 kills, hitting .145, while the Chanticleers hit .258 in posting 55 kills. Coastal Carolina held an edge in blocks, 8-7.5, and a 51-46 advantage in digs.
Lillie Happel recorded 14 kills to lead the Lady Flames, also adding eight digs. Caroline Douglas chipped in 10 kills, while Gabrielle Shipe had a match-high 16 digs. Jade Craycraft recorded 34 assists, and Kendle Rollins paced Liberty with five blocks. Monica Johnson totaled seven kills and three blocks.
For Coastal Carolina, Gabriella Horvath and Kindra Bailey both tallied 13 kills, with Bailey adding five blocks. Meghan Laffin recorded 12 kills, while Sam Skryd posted 15 digs. Lauren Alejo dished out a match-high 35 assists in addition to three aces.
The Lady Flames led by as many as five points, 11-6, during set one. Coastal Carolina took the lead for the first time at 14-13 following an 8-2 surge. Douglas sent down her team-leading fourth kill of the set to tie the score at 21-21, before the Chanticleers closed to the finish in a 25-22 victory.
Coastal Carolina hit .257 in the opening set, getting four kills from Bailey. The Lady Flames received two or more kills from six players, hitting .222 as a team.
Liberty faced a 22-16 deficit during set two before staging a 7-1 run that included two aces from Haraf. A Coastal Carolina error gave the Lady Flames set point, at 24-23. The Chanticleers scored the final three points of the set with two kills and an ace, taking a 2-0 match lead with a 26-24 set-two win.
The hosts posted 17 kills at a .325 pace during the second set, compared to 13 kills at .116 for the Lady Flames. Horvath paced all players with five kills, while Happel had four kills for Liberty.
Liberty extended the match with a 25-20 victory in the third set. The Lady Flames trailed, 16-14, before going on a 5-0 run to take control. Happel recorded five out of her six set-two kills during Liberty's 11-4 surge to the finish. The Lady Flames attacked at a .143 pace during set three, and Coastal Carolina hit .088. Liberty posted 4.5 team blocks during the stanza.
Coastal Carolina responded by winning set four, 25-18, to clinch the match. The Chanticleers led by as many as eight, 23-15, before the Lady Flames trimmed the deficit to five but could get no closer. The hosts hit .375 in the fourth set, compared to .097 for the Lady Flames.
The Lady Flames next compete in a pair of home conference matches, beginning on Friday at 7 p.m. against Presbyterian College. Liberty then hosts Winthrop at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.