Auburn Volleyball opens 2022 with pair of victories at Panther Invite

August 27, 2022

AUBURN, Ala. – Auburn Volleyball (2-0) noticed a bit little bit of every thing on Friday on the Panther Invitational.
 
After sweeping Belmont, 3-0 (25-23, 25-19, 25-19), the Tigers went toe-to-toe with a scrappy Georgia State crew and a boisterous crowd to maintain its good report intact with a 3-1 (22-25, 26-24, 30-28, 26-24) win.
 
VS.  BELMONT
Auburn waited greater than 250 days to swimsuit up and play volleyball once more and as soon as the crew shook off the first-game jitters, head coach Brent Crouch‘s squad went proper right down to enterprise, sweeping Belmont, 3-0 (25-23, 25-19, 25-19).
 
The Bruins led by as many as 4 within the opening body and carried a 16-12 lead halfway by means of the primary set. Nevertheless, a service error and two fast kills from senior Rebekah Rath and freshman Akasha Anderson compelled a timeout and swung the momentum again in favor of the Orange and Blue.
 
Powered by 4 kills from Rath and two blocks apiece from the senior, Chelsey Harmon, Jackie Barrett and Kendal Kemp, Auburn rapidly took management down the stretch. The truth is, it was Harmon’s and Barrett’s thunderous block that sealed the crew’s early lead.
 
Freshman Kendal Kemp’s huge day wasn’t fairly executed, nonetheless. Two kills and 5 extra block assists helped propel the Tigers to a 13-0 run within the second set.
 
Kemp ended the morning with 9 complete blocks, matching this system report for many blocks in a three-set match.
 
Fellow children Madison Scheer and Akasha Anderson additionally jumped within the fray. Anderson’s three kills within the second stanza led Auburn whereas Scheer adopted up with two together with Kemp and Rath.
 
Scheer would lead the squad with a .467 hitting proportion, securing eight kills.
 
Because the Tigers’ serve-receive stored enhancing all through the match so to did the tempo at which Auburn started to attain. Zoe Slaughter dialed up back-to-back aces because the Tiger raced out to a 9-1 lead within the third set.
 
Slaughter additionally completed the match second in digs with 11 behind one other freshman in Sarah Morton (15).
 
In complete, Auburn freshmen have been accountable for 17 kills, 29 digs, 11 blocks and two aces.
 
Rath cranked up the strain within the closing set, grabbing 5 kills. The Altamonte Springs, Florida native would end as the one Tiger in double figures with 11 as Auburn closed out the third to earn the sweep.
 
VS. GEORGIA STATE
Eyeing an ideal begin to 2022, the Tigers powered by means of a scrappy match inside GSU Sports activities area, dealing with the Panthers in three straight deuce-set to earn the 3-1 win (22-25, 26-24, 30-28, 26-24).
 
Again-to-back kills from Rath had the Tigers within the circulate of issues early however stout serving and an brisk crowd fueled the Panthers to an early five-point lead within the opening set.
 
Akasha Anderson added six kills within the first set to associate with Rath’s 5 as Auburn continued to rally late within the first.
 
Whereas Sarah Morton’s aced pulled the Tigers inside some extent, forcing a timeout from Georgia State, the house facet finally closed out the set, 25-22, to take the early lead.
 
Aggressive serving allowed Auburn to maintain the Panthers at arm’s size within the second. A number of aces from each Kendal Kemp and Fallan Lanham gave the Orange and Blue a four-point lead halfway by means of the set.
 
Kemps added to her spectacular debut for in a Tiger uniform. The 6-6 center blocker is not simply restricted to front-row duties. Alongside together with her aces, Kemp’s serving stacked up three straight factors, extending her crew’s lead.
 
Regardless of the Panthers forcing additional factors, Rath’s eleventh kill of the night introduced the matchup even at one set apiece.
 
When Lanham got here again to the service line within the third set, not even the Panther pep band was going to distract her from piling up the factors. The Kentucky native sandwiched one other ace in the midst of seven serves in a row in a run that noticed Auburn prolong its result in 5.
 
A late run from Georgia State pushed issues into additional factors for the second straight set however Crouch’s resilient children rallied by means of.
 
Buying and selling blows forwards and backwards, it was a Kemp/Rath block adopted by Kemp’s third kill of the set to say the lead, 2-1.
 
Whereas it was evident the Panthers weren’t going away quietly, neither was this Auburn squad.
 
Once more, it was Rath together with a wholesome dose of freshman flashes to maintain the Tigers inside hanging distance. Rath showcased why she led the SEC in kills per set a season in the past, hitting a good .300 and claiming a match-high 25 kills
 
Kemp capped off her day together with her third ace of the match and a pair of kills to push her crew over the sting.
 
For the third straight set, two packages wanted additional factors to resolve the victory and for the third straight time, Auburn answered the decision, ending off the match with a 26-24 effort.
 
MATCH NOTES

 
CROUCH’S COMMENTS
“We had 4 freshmen begin towards Belmont with a completely new lineup. I anticipated there to be some rising pains and there have been but it surely was good when everybody began settling down. It was just about every thing that I wished out of the primary match to get the jitters out and get the win.
 
“Within the Georgia State match, that crew performed effectively and so they have been fired up. Very enjoyable crowd and band to play in entrance of. They did some issues that we’re not used to fairly but. Between spin serves and a quick offense, these have been two challenges for us that we have been in a position to play towards. To tug out the win in deuce units is a very huge deal. We’ve such a younger crew and it is such confidence booster for everybody.
 
On Kendal Kemp’s huge day…
“Her serving has improved a lot say day one. Sooner or later, I actually consider she’ll be among the best servers within the SEC. I actually appreciated how she stepped up in the direction of the top of the final match. We lastly go some balls nearer to the online and he or she bought some kills and made a giant distinction.”
 

See also  Ronaldo, Wiegman, Messi ... as well as Weghorst: Evaluating the very best as well as worst of 2022