ARLINGTON – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi volleyball team bounced back with an explosive performance Saturday evening to sweep UT Arlington 3-0 (25-20, 25-23, 25-21) in the final match of the Hilton Maverick Classic at College Park Center. The Islanders had a balanced performance with three Islanders finishing in double figures in kills and digs while junior Ashley Phelps highlighted the Islanders' offense with a career-high 18 kills on .333 hitting.
The Islanders (4-6) clinched their first sweep of the season and topped UTA (5-5) for the third time in program history. The Islanders finished the weekend with a 2-1 record and Ivy Baresh and Phelps was named to the all-tournament team for their dominant performance over the weekend.
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi hit .228 in the match with 52 kills and limited the Mavericks to just .127 hitting and 29 kills. Baresh tallied her fifth double-double of the season with 11 kills and 13 digs while Brianna Brink chipped in 12 kills on .318 hitting. The Islanders' defense also played a big factor in the Islanders' victory with Baresh, Hailey King (17) and Renee Ramirez (11) all finishing in double figures in digs. Senior Logen Bourque also had a solid performance with 40 assists while hitting .462 with six kills.
The Islanders jumped out to a 7-5 lead after back-to-back kills by Baresh and Phelps. UTA evened the set at 9-9 before the Islanders pushed ahead 12-9 with kills by Bourque, Phelps and Brink and never looked back. The Islanders stayed out front the rest of the way to seal a 25-20 first-set victory. Texas A&M – Corpus Christi hit .275 in the first set and Phelps tallied a set-high six kills.
The Islanders carried over their momentum into the second set and jumped out to a 9-4 lead on a 4-0 run. UTA responded with a 5-0 run late in the set to garner a 17-15 lead. Baresh followed with a kill before a Maverick's attacking error evened the set at 17-17. Both teams rallied back-and-forth until two straight points by the Islanders knotted the score at 20-20. After a UTA timeout, the Islanders and Mavericks battled until the Islanders squeezed out a 25-23 victory with a kill by Brink and an ace by Sarah Sanchez.
It was all Islanders in the third set with Phelps leading the pack with seven kills and Baresh tacking on eight of her 13 digs. The Islanders opened with a 10-4 lead and extended their lead to 17-8 on a kill by Brink. Baresh and Shaquinn Parker followed with consecutive kills to pad the Islanders lead to 19-10. However, the Islanders saw their lead evaporate to two after a 7-0 run by the Mavericks. The Islanders recovered with three straight kills by Baresh and Phelps to extend their lead to 22-17. UTA followed with a 3-0 run but a kill by Parker and an attacking error by UTA added two straight points for the Islanders. After an Islanders' service error, Phelps clinched the set at 25-21 and the match with her 18th kill of the match.
The Islanders will open conference play on the road Tuesday, Sept. 17, against McNeese State in Lake Charles, La.
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