MONROE, La. -- The Southern Miss volleyball team spread the wealth on all offensive facets en route to a Tuesday night sweep at ULM (25-16, 25-18, 25-13) inside Fant-Ewing Coliseum.
"What was great about this match is we had a very balanced offense," head coach Amanda Berkley said. "It's a tribute to Maka and Sarah for mixing it up and getting everyone involved. We passed really well and it helped us get the ball to everyone on offense. Overall it was a good team win."
ULM scored four straight points in the first set to take an 8-7 lead, but that would be the last time Southern Miss trailed until the final set. Ashley Berry came out firing with a kill, and Stephany Purdue followed to begin the 8-3 Southern Miss run. The Golden Eagles later got service aces from Kylie Grandy and Makareta Rademakers that forced ULM into a timeout, trailing 21-13.
Southern Miss (9-3) did most of its damage in the early going of Set Two, taking a 6-1 lead. All of those points all came via a kill (Grandy 2, Purdue, Catherine Repsher, Chanel Joyce and Alexis Coombs). ULM managed to stay within five, but Southern Miss opened it back up with three points in a row to hold a 16-8 advantage. ULM's 5-1 run late in the second set was too little to overcome the Golden Eagle lead, which led to a 25-18 win there.
The Golden Eagles faced a different challenge in the third set, leading just 9-8. Natalie Druhan picked up a service ace in the process as well. Southern Miss then showed out with seven consecutive points that gave them another 16-8 lead. It developed into a 24-11 match-point score, and Berry closed it out with her team-leading seventh kill of the night.
Southern Miss will now set its sights on the Lady Razorback Invitational. It will play host Arkansas (12 p.m.) and UMKC (5 p.m.) on Friday before concluding with Kansas State at 10 a.m. Saturday.
-Southern Miss has swept ULM each of the last five meetings since 1993.
-Stephany Purdue, Kylie Grandy, Catherine Repsher and Ashley Berry all posted a team-high seven kills.
-The freshman Berry was one off a career-high in that department. She also had a team-high 21 attempts.
-Makareta Rademakers led the way with 17 assists and a pair of service aces.
-The team's nine service aces were its most since having 11 against both Grambling (3 sets) and Tulane (5 sets) in the opening weekend.
-Southern Miss allowed just a .043 hitting percentage after Northwestern State was held to -.070 on Saturday.
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