JONESBORO, AR (ASU) – The Arkansas State volleyball team moved to 2-0 in Sun Belt Conference play with a 3-2 (25-17, 29-31, 20-25, 25-20, 15-13) victory over Troy Sunday afternoon at the Convocation Center.
A-State (6-10, 2-0) came out strong in the first set by taking a 10-3 advantage after a kill from Kendal Davis and the Red Wolves led 19-10 after a Troy attack error. Troy (5-11, 0-2) was able to get within six points at 23-17, but a kill by Sadie Clark and Troy attack error gave the Red Wolves the final two points and a 25-17 win.
With the Red Wolves up in the match 1-0, an intense second set took place and both teams went back and forth with A-State tying it up 10-10 on a Jackie Gerig service ace. Troy responded with a 6-2 run for a 16-12 lead before A-State used an 8-3 run to take a 20-19 lead after a Clark kill. The match was then tied 10 more times, the last coming at 29-29, before two Troy kills gave the Trojans a 31-29 set victory. With the match tied 1-1, Troy started game three out with a 12-6 lead, but A-State was able to tie it at 18-18 after a Clark kill. Troy responded with a 7-2 run to win the set 25-20 and take a 2-1 lead into the fourth set.
The fourth game was tied 10-10 before A-State used an 8-3 run, capped by a kill from Sarah Kemp, to take an 18-13 edge. Troy was able to cut the deficit to 24-20 before a Trojan service error gave A-State the 25-20 set victory and tied the match at 2-2. The deciding fifth set did not get off to a promising start for the Red Wolves as the Trojans built a 4-1 lead. A-State fought back to take an 8-7 lead after a Trojan attack error, but Troy battled back to take a 12-10 advantage. The Red Wolves used an attack error and two consecutive blocks to take a one point lead at 13-12 before a Trojan kill tied the set at 13-13. The Red Wolves won the next point on a Sarah Kemp kill for a 14-13 lead and a block by Davis and Kelsey Sullivan clinched a 15-13 set victory and a 3-2 match win for Arkansas State.
"This was a great win for us today in another hard-fought conference match," A-State volleyball coach David Rehr said. "We're seeing our difficult non-conference schedule paying off. It was tough to lose some of those matches when we did, but we learned from it and it has obviously prepared us well for our conference schedule, which is what we wanted it to get us ready for."
Kemp led A-State with 15 kills and also registered a double-double by adding 11 digs. Clark and Sullivan also reached double-digit kills for the Red Wolves with 13 and 10, respectively. Gerig also recorded a double-double by handing out 47 assists and totaling 11 digs. Megan Baska registered 15 digs and Clark recorded six total blocks, including two block solos, to lead A-State defensively.
The Red Wolves return to action in a road contest against in-state rival and SBC opponent UALR Wednesday, Oct. 2. The matchup with the Trojans is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in the Jack Stephens Center.