CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi volleyball team dropped a tough loss to UTSA, 3-1 (25-23, 20-25, 25-17, 25-23) Monday evening in front of an all-time record crowd of 1,270 in the Dugan Wellness Center. Ivy Baresh and Brianna Brink led the team in the home opener with 14 kills apiece while Logen Bourque recorded her fourth double-double of the season.
The Islanders (2-5) dropped the first set 25-23 before bouncing back to tie the match with a 25-20 second-set victory. After UTSA (4-4) secured the third set, 25-17, the Islanders rallied back in the fourth set to take a 23-20 lead, but a 5-0 run by the Roadrunners clinched the set, 25-23, and the match.
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi out-blocked the Roadrunners 6-2 in the first two sets before UTSA controlled the net in the final two sets, 8-0. Brink tied her match-high with 14 kills while Bourque collected 35 assists and a season-high 15 digs. Hailey King also finished in double digits with 13 digs.
Conference USA Preseason Player of the Year McKenzie Adams led the Roadrunners with a match-high 20 kills on .167 hitting. Dajana Boskovic chipped in 14 kills while the Roadrunners had four players finish in double-figures in digs.
The Islanders fell behind early in the first set, 13-6, but back-to-back kills by Baresh and Brink and an attack error by Adams pulled the Islanders within four. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi rallied back with a 3-0 run to cut the deficit to three late in the set but UTSA stayed out in front by two. The Islanders kept fighting and tied the set at 22-22 on a 3-0 run, but a kill by Adams and an attacking error by the Islanders put the Roadrunners back in front by two. After an Islanders' timeout, the team came within one, but a kill by Boskovic sealed the set 25-23.
The Islanders bounced back in the second set, which featured 10 ties, to win 25-20. Brink had six kills on .333 hitting and Bourque registered eight assists and six digs. The Islanders hit .206 in the set and limited the Roadrunners to just .158 hitting. UTSA opened with a 7-3 lead until the Islanders evened the score at 10-10. Both teams battled back-and-forth with intense rallies until the Islanders took the lead at 20-19 and never looked back. The Islanders capitalized on two straight errors by the Roadrunners to push ahead 22-19 and after a UTSA timeout, the Islanders went on a 2-0 run to build a five-point cushion. After a Roadrunner kill, Brink capped the set with her 10th kill of the match.
After the break, UTSA took the next two sets with eight blocks to win the match. In the third set, the Roadrunners jumped out to an early 7-3 lead and never trailed. The Islanders had a late rally with consecutive kills by Brink and Haley Satterwhite Day to trim UTSA's lead to five. But a 5-2 run by the visitor's put the set away, 25-17, for a 2-1 lead in the match.
In the fourth set, the Islanders got ahead early, 7-2, with kills by Baresh and Bourque but UTSA rallied back to pull within one at 9-8. A pair of attacking errors by the Roadrunners and a kill by Satterwhite built a four-point lead for the home team. The Islanders built a 16-12 lead but a 4-0 run by UTSA evened the score at 16-16. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi stayed out in front until a kill by Kasey Kiefer knotted the score at 18-18. The Islanders looked to pulling away after a kill by Shaquinn Parker at 23-20 but a 5-0 run by UTSA won the set and the match.
The Islanders will head back on the road this weekend for the Hilton Maverick Classic in Arlington, Texas. The team will face Mississippi Valley State on Friday, Sept. 13, before facing the Roadrunners and UT Arlington on Saturday, Sept. 14, for its final three pre-conference matches.
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