September 2, 2011

Islanders Split Matches on First Day of Valparaiso Tournament

VALPARAISO, Ind. – The Texas A&M – Corpus Christi volleyball team picked up a split in two matches on Friday during the first day of the Valparaiso Marriott Volley Brawl in Indiana. The team took a 3-0 win over the Murray State Racers in the nightcap after falling 3-0 to the Evansville Purple Aces in the morning session.

The Islanders are now 3-2 on the season following the two matches. They will play two more matches in the tourney on Saturday, including an 11:30 a.m. contest against host Valparaiso and a 4:30 p.m. match against Ball State to conclude the tournament.

In the match against Murray State, Texas A&M – Corpus Christi was able to get the three-set sweep thanks to two upperclassmen in senior Jessica Korda and junior Shannon Hullum. Korda tied for the team lead with nine kills while Hullum matched the total with nine kills of her own on a .304 hitting percentage.

In set one, Brooke Alverson got things going with a kill for the first point of the match while the Islanders eventually led by as many as seven at 19-12. The Racers closed the gap to just two at 23-21, but another Alverson kill bookended the set for a 25-22 win and a 1-0 lead.

The second stanza saw Texas A&M – Corpus Christi outscore their opponent 7-1 at the start and stretch the lead to eight points at 16-8 with kills from Korda, Hullum and Brianna Brink as well as a pair of service aces and a kill from Alverson. Murray State closed the gap to four points at 19-15, but the Islanders were too much for the Racers, taking a 25-18 victory.

The final set between the teams was another close one like the first one. Korda started things off with a kill, but the two teams traded the lead several times in a set that featured 19 ties and six lead changes. The score was tied at 21-21 before Tina Chavis gave her team a 22-21 lead. The final tie of the match came at 23-23 before a Racers attack error and a kill from Brink ended it at 25-23.

Logen Bourque had a team-high in both assists (28) and digs (18) while Chavis had a match-high four total blocks as part of 14 team blocks. Alverson added seven kills while Brink and Chavis had five apiece.

In the early match of the day, the Islanders lost a 3-0 final to undefeated Evansville to open the tournament. Evansville took a 25-19 first set, before the Islanders battled to a heartbreaking 25-23 loss in set number two. The Purple Aces win the final set 25-18 to stay unbeaten in the 2011 season.

Brink had a team-high 10 kills and 14 digs for the first double-double of her career. Bourque had a team-high 24 assists while Nolan had 19 digs.

Free live video will also be available for the match against Valparaiso at 11:30 a.m. while live stats will be available for the match against Valpo and Ball State at 4:30 p.m. to close out the tournament.

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