Juliette Thévenin leads Gamecocks with 11 kills in the match
COLUMBIA, SC September 21, 2013 – The South Carolina women’s volleyball team claimed the Carolina Classic Tournament title on Saturday night, defeating Presbyterian 3-0 (25-12, 25-15, 25-21), behind 11 kills from senior outside hitter Juliette Thévenin. The Gamecocks (8-4), also defeated Western Carolina, 3-0, and Robert Morris, 3-1, en route to the title. Thévenin was named the Tournament’s MVP, while sophomore middle blocker Darian Dozier also garnered All-Tournament Team accolades.
South Carolina out-hit the Blue Hose .222 to -.011 in the match, posting 36 kills to the 26 of PC. The Gamecocks also posted six aces in the match, including two from Michaela Christiaansen, compared to just one ace from Presbyterian.
Thévenin posted a match-high 11 kills to once again lead Carolina in the category, while Dozier and sophomore outside hitter Sarah Blomgren both collected five blocks at the net. Christiaansen also tallied a team high 10 digs in the match, while sophomore setter Kellie McNeil posted eight. PC’s Kelly Berryman tallied a team high 10 kills, while Mary Trimpe led the Blue Hose with 10 digs.
The first set saw the teams match point-for-point early, but a kill by freshman middle blocker Jacqy Angermiller gave Carolina a 16-10 advantage, and the Gamecocks would out-score the Blue Hose 9-2 to close out the set. Three kills from Thévenin and an ace from freshman libero Megan Kirkland down the stretch highlighted the 25-12 win for the Gamecocks.
South Carolina raced out to an early 9-3 lead in set two on a kill from Blomgren. Presbyterian scored five unanswered points through the middle of the set behind the service of Ashtin Frank, before a kill from Angermiller halted the streak at 14-10 South Carolina. The teams would trade points before four-straight scores from the Gamecocks behind the service of Thévenin pushed the Carolina lead to 21-13. An ace from freshman libero Jordan Wilson-Talmadge closed the 25-15 set win for the Gamecocks.
The third set proved the most competitive, as the Blue Hose held an 8-6 lead before consecutive errors from the PC defenders drew the score even at 8-8. The teams would match points with the score once again tied at 17-17 after a Gamecock attack error. PC would score three unanswered points to lead 20-17, but Carolina responded with five-straight scores to pull ahead on an ace from Christiaansen to lead 22-20. The Blue Hose would post just one more point in the match, and the Gamecocks would close the third set with a 25-21 victory.
South Carolina begins SEC play when it travels to face Missouri on Friday, Sept. 27, in Columbia, Mo. The match is set to begin at 7:30 p.m. ET.