LAKE CHARLES, La. – The Texas A&M – Corpus Christi Volleyball team picked up its sixth straight victory on Friday night, taking a 3-1 (26-24, 25-11, 23-25, 25-20) final over McNeese State to set a new high for consecutive victories in program history.
The Islanders (15-6, 8-2 Southland) used another big rally in the first set, this time completing the comeback, on the way to a 3-1 match win over the Cowgirls (6-16, 1-8 Southland) at Memorial Gym on the McNeese campus.
Shannon Hullum had a match-high 16 kills while Brianna Brink picked up 11 as the only other Islander in double digits. Ivy Baresh had a high of 18 digs in the match, and libero Micah Nolan added 13 on the night while Logen Bourque had 47 assists to lead the team.
The opening set started out slow for the Islanders with McNeese taking a 16-10 lead before Alverson came up with a kill that started a rally. With the score 17-12, Alverson and Baresh came up with kills to cut the lead to 17-15 and force a Cowgirls timeout. After the break, a block assist by Alverson, Baresh and Brink tied the score up at 17-17 as the Islanders came all the way back from the six-point deficit. After the rally, McNeese regained the lead and would hold a 22-19 advantage before the final push from Texas A&M – Corpus Christi. Kills by Hullum and Baresh brought the score to 22-21, but the Cowgirls would once again take a three-point lead and hold set point at 24-21. Courtney Hall picked up a kill to make it 24-22 and three straight error by McNeese made it a 25-24 lead for the Islanders before an Alverson kill ended it at 26-24.
The second set was a complete turnaround from the first with Texas A&M – Corpus Christi taking control early on the way to a 25-11 win. Kills by Hullum and Alverson and two from Baresh made it a 5-1 lead as the Islanders never looked back. The lead grew to as many as 14 when at 10-5, a pair of block assists from Hullum and Tyger Holt started things followed by a Hullum kill, a block by Brink and Holt and then another combined block by Hullum and Holt to make it a 15-5 score. Back-to-back kills by Ashley Phelps and a block assist by Alverson and Phelps helped make it a 21-7 advantage. Phelps got it to set point with a kill and Bourque ended it with one of her own for a 25-11 final and 2-0 lead.
After the Cowgirls earned a 25-23 win in the third set, the Islanders clinched the match by taking a 25-20 final in a fourth set that featured eight ties and five lead changes as both teams battled for every point. Texas A&M – Corpus Christi trailed by one at 18-17 when a McNeese service error even the score at 18-18 and an Alverson kill gave her team the final lead of the match. McNeese called timeout while trailing 20-18, but a Bourque kill, a Baresh service ace and an Alverson kill after the break made it a 23-18 lead. Two straight by the Cowgirls made it 23-20, but back-to-back kills by Brink finished the scoring at 25-20 for the Islanders win.
The Islanders return home for a match against Texas – Pan American on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. in the Dugan Wellness Center in the final non-conference home match of the year.
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