MSU volleyball rallies to close out Jaguar Invitational

The Bulldogs (4-6) overpowered the Lady Lions (1-8), 20-25, 25-19, 25-14, 25-13 in the final match at the Jaguar Invitational.

Posted: Sep 8, 2018 3:21 PM

MOBILE, Ala. (MSU Athletics/WTVA) - After a tough start, Mississippi State rallied to defeat Southeastern Louisiana in four sets on Saturday (Sept. 8) to close out the third week of non-conference play.

The Bulldogs (4-6) overpowered the Lady Lions (1-8), 20-25, 25-19, 25-14, 25-13 in the final match at the Jaguar Invitational.

"It's good to head home with a win," first-year coach Julie Darty said. "To see our response after dropping the first set, and to make a decision as a team to play with such a sense of urgency was nice to see. I think our passing was pretty good, because we relied heavily on AJ, Amarrah and Deja when we needed some big-time offense. From the service line, we were pretty good as well. When we can control the serve and pass game, that helps us be able to execute our game plan.

"I'm proud of the Dawgs for finishing with a win, and I think every time we play we look a little bit more comfortable with each other," Darty explained. "We still have plenty to improve upon, but I thought that in sets 2-4, we were pretty consistent as a group and consistency has been a big theme for us."

A kill by AJ Koele put the Dawgs on the board to start the match. A kills battle ensued as 11-straight points were totaled solely by kills to bring the score to 11-9, Mississippi State. The back-and-forth continued throughout the set, before two errors by the Bulldogs gave Southeastern Louisiana the set win. Amarrah Cooks had a .556 hitting percentage with five kills. Koele hit .800 with four kills.

Mississippi State continued to have some confusion on the court during the start of the second set, but a kill by Cooks and a service ace from Kendall Murr spurred a five-point spurt to push MSU into the lead, 9-7. Similarly to the first set, both teams were clicking on offense and a kill by Koele secured the set for the Bulldogs. Cooks had another impressive set hitting .714 and tallying five kills. Deja Robinson had three kills, a .429 hitting percentage and added two block assists.

Back-to-back errors by SLU put MSU ahead to start the third set. The Lady Tigers struggled to stop the Bulldogs attack game, and MSU propelled to a 19-6 lead. From there, the Bulldogs could not be stopped as they went on to win the set and take the 2-1 edge into the fourth set. Koele led the team with six kills and a .625 hitting percentage. Murr had six digs and one assist. Kath and Cooks both had two block assists, and Cooks added four kills.

Mississippi State capitalized on its attack game and benefitted from errors by Southeastern Louisiana to cruise to an early 10-3 lead. The Bulldogs had a six-point run, which included two service aces from Alleah Stamatis, to make it 20-8. The two teams exchanged sideout points down the stretch before a kill by Paige Shaw ended the match.

"AJ and Amarrah being named to the All-Tournament team is a nice nod for them," Darty commented. "I am proud of their consistent play this weekend."

The Bulldogs are on the road for the last non-conference weekend of the season. Mississippi State travels to Denton, Texas, for the North Texas Challenge. MSU will face host North Texas on Thursday, Sept. 13 at 7 p.m. On Friday, Sept. 14, MSU faces No. 22 Cal Poly at 3 p.m. The Bulldogs close out the weekend against Stephen F. Austin at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 15.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 15229

Reported Deaths: 723
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds99925
Lauderdale73561
Madison72023
Scott65012
Neshoba63038
Jones59825
Forrest55338
DeSoto5337
Rankin4217
Leake42112
Holmes39728
Copiah3104
Jackson30513
Attala29216
Yazoo2734
Newton2714
Leflore25831
Harrison2577
Lincoln25628
Monroe25525
Lamar2355
Oktibbeha23512
Lowndes2119
Pearl River20931
Pike20211
Adams19615
Noxubee1856
Wayne1771
Warren1719
Washington1687
Covington1652
Bolivar16011
Jasper1574
Smith15011
Lee1496
Kemper14411
Clarke14318
Chickasaw13312
Lafayette1314
Coahoma1214
Carroll11711
Marion1159
Clay1124
Winston1121
Claiborne1112
Lawrence1021
Simpson1010
Yalobusha905
Hancock9011
Tate891
Grenada893
Wilkinson889
Itawamba877
Union835
Marshall833
Montgomery831
Sunflower813
Jefferson Davis772
Tippah7311
Panola703
Webster691
Calhoun644
Humphreys607
Amite601
Walthall550
Tunica543
Prentiss523
Perry503
Choctaw432
Jefferson421
Tishomingo320
Pontotoc323
Stone300
Franklin282
Tallahatchie271
Quitman260
George251
Alcorn171
Benton150
Greene121
Sharkey70
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 17359

Reported Deaths: 618
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2191115
Jefferson1780102
Montgomery163238
Tuscaloosa73814
Marshall6879
Franklin5457
Lee54033
Shelby50319
Tallapoosa42364
Butler40217
Chambers35325
Walker3442
Elmore3398
Madison3274
Baldwin2839
Dallas2603
Morgan2511
Etowah24811
DeKalb2433
Lowndes23812
Coffee2291
Sumter2206
Autauga2164
Houston2094
Bullock2034
Pike1980
Colbert1782
Russell1670
Marengo1636
Lauderdale1612
Hale1598
Calhoun1543
Choctaw1518
Barbour1501
Wilcox1447
Clarke1422
Cullman1260
Randolph1257
Marion12111
St. Clair1181
Pickens1114
Dale1100
Talladega1093
Chilton1001
Limestone940
Greene944
Winston880
Covington771
Jackson772
Crenshaw763
Macon754
Henry742
Bibb721
Washington686
Blount611
Escambia573
Lawrence480
Geneva400
Conecuh391
Coosa381
Monroe372
Perry370
Cherokee373
Clay272
Lamar230
Fayette150
Cleburne141
Unassigned00
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