Volleyball drops heartbreaker in fifth set at North Texas
DENTON, Texas -- Two points were all that separated Southern Miss from a regular season-sweep of North Texas, a squad that entered the day 21-2 on the season. The Mean Green put together a masterful offensive performance that was too much to overcome in a 3-2 loss on Sunday afternoon (17-25, 25-22, 11-25, 25-23, 13-15).
"That was another typical Southern Miss vs. North Texas match," head coach Amanda Berkley said. "Both teams battled and wanted to win badly. I'm proud of the fight our team had."
Chandler Marshall had 18 kills and Kylie Grandy added 16. North Texas totaled 16 blocks to thwart the rest of the Golden Eagles' offensive attack in their bid for a fifth-straight win in the all-time series.
There were also no lead changes until a 4-0 Southern Miss run put it up 10-8 in the fourth set. In the midst of that outburst, Chandler Marshall tallied two kills, Sarah Bell added another and Natalie Druhan recorded an ace. Fortunately for the Golden Eagles, UNT would never tie it up again. A service error gave Southern Miss set-point, and an attack error ended the frame and forced a fifth set.
The fifth set saw Southern Miss force ties at 7-7 and 12-12, the latter of which forcing a UNT timeout. An attack error and UNT kill succeeded the stoppage in play, and the Black and Gold was unable to recover from its match-point.
The first set started off less-than-ideally for the Golden Eagles, who found themselves down 5-1 and 14-7 before a 25-17 defeat.
Oddly enough in the second set, Chandler Marshall began play with a kill and the Golden Eagles would never trail. North Texas would tie it up six times in the midst of the action. A 3-0 run for a 16-11 lead, capped off by Madison Lawler's ace, forced the Mean Green to call a timeout.
Southern Miss (16-10, 6-4 C-USA) plays at UAB on Friday night at 7 p.m. CT.
-Sarah Bell surpassed the 50-assist plateau for the 21st time of her career and sixth time this season.
-Bell also boasts a .379 hitting percentage after producing five kills on eight tries with no errors.
-Kylie Grandy has three consecutive double-doubles and 11 on the season.