HOUSTON – Sophomore Ivy Baresh led the Islanders with a career-high 16 kills and a team-high 16 digs while Logen Bourque and Brianna Brink both finished with double-doubles, but it wasn't enough as LSU controlled the net with 13 blocks to win 3-0 (25-16, 25-22, 25-20). The Tigers (4-0) recorded 18 block assists and four block solos while the Islanders' (1-4) tallied one block by Shaquinn Parker on Saturday morning in the Rice Invitational I at Tudor Fieldhouse.
Baresh hit a team-high .344 and picked up her fourth double-double of the season. Bourque led the Islanders' offense with 32 assists and 13 digs while Brink chipped in 10 kills and 10 digs. Hailey King also tallied 12 of the Islanders' match-high 66 digs.
In the opening set, the Tigers opened with an early 6-2 lead before the Islanders rallied back at 13-7 with a pair of kills by Brink to pull within four. LSU answered with a 4-0 run to force the Islanders to take their second timeout of the set. After rallying back-and forth, the Islanders capitalized on a pair of LSU errors to trim the deficit to six. However, straight points by the Tigers pushed the lead to 21-13. Both teams traded points before Bourque recorded her first kill of the set with an assist from Baresh. After an Islanders' service error, Brink registered her fifth kill of the set to make it 23-16, but back-to-back points by the Tigers lifted the home team to a 25-16 first-set victory. LSU tallied four blocks in the opening set while Brink recoded five of her 10 kills in the first set.
In the second set, the Tigers jumped out to a 10-7 lead before the Islanders rallied back with three straight points, including back-to-back kills by Baresh and Parker to knot the score at 10-10. The Islanders and Tigers went back-and-forth until five straight hitting errors by the Islanders pushed LSU back out front, 17-12. Sarah Sanchez and Bourque responded with consecutive kills to trim the lead to four. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi kept fighting with Baresh and Ashley Phelps collecting kills to keep the Islanders within two. After a timeout by the Islanders at 21-17, Texas A&M - Corpus Christi earned straight points on an Tigers' attacking error and a kill by Parker to trim the lead to two. The Islanders rallied back with two points to make it 24-22, but after a LSU timeout, the Tigers capped the second set 25-22 with a kill. Baresh hit a set-high .500 and recorded five digs.
The Islanders fell behind early 9-5 in the third set before Baresh smashed her 11th kill of the set, and Bourque followed with her third kill of the match. LSU built a 15-11 lead on straight points before the Islanders scored two consecutive points on a Tigers' service error and an ace by Brink. LSU pulled ahead 19-13 on a 4-0 run, but consecutive kills by Baresh and Phelps helped jumpstart a 5-0 run by the Islanders and pull them within one. After a LSU timeout, the Tigers built a four-point cushion on a 3-0 run to make it 22-18. The Islanders and Tigers traded points back-and-forth until LSU capped the match on an Islanders' hitting error to win the set, 25-20.
The Islanders will conclude the invitational this evening at 5 p.m. against UALR. Follow the match live on Twitter (@IslandersVB) or on live stats at: http://bit.ly/1dQBIks
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