CSU rally comes up short as Bucs fall to Presbyterian, 3-2

CSU rally comes up short as Bucs fall to Presbyterian, 3-2

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Down 2-0 heading into the third set, Charleston Southern made a furious rally to send the match into the deciding fifth frame, but the Buccaneers luck ran out at the end as CSU fell in five sets on Friday evening inside the Buc Dome to Presbyterian, 25-22, 25-15, 23-25, 24-26, 15-12.

Charleston Southern rallied twice to record wins in both the third and fourth sets, sending the match to the final frame in search of their first conference win of the 2013 season, but a 5-1 run at the switch in the fifth set proved to be the difference as the Buccaneers were unable to make up the difference in falling to the Blue Hose for the second time in the 2013 season.

Charleston Southern falls to 6-20, 0-10 in Big South play on the year with the loss, while Presbyterian improves to 8-18, 6-4 in conference action with the win.

Erin LaVenice continued her standout play as of late, leading Charleston Southern with a season-high 19 kills in the match, hitting .472 from the floor in the match to pace the Buccaneers offense. Meredith Parrott was also in double-digits with 11 kills as the middle blockers led the way in CSU hitting .181 as a team. Cassidy Greer set up the Bucs' attack with 46 set assists, while SIraya Windsor had four service aces, narrowly missing out on the double-double with nine kills and a match-high 20 digs.

Defensively, Taylor Allman chipped in 17 digs for the Bucs defense, while Greer completed the double-double with 10 digs for CSU. At the net, LaVenice had five total blocks, including two key solo putbacks, while Parrott added four of her own.

The Blue Hose offense was led by a 23 kill performance by Andrea Barman, while Rachel Hill added 16 kills and Kelly Berryman had 10 as PC hit .250 from the floor as a team. Ashtin Frank was a key contributor to the Presbyterian offense with 53 set assists, while Aubrey Dooley and Mary Trimpe had three aces a piece.

Trimpe led four PC players in double-digits with 20 digs, while Frank had 14, Dooley 13 and Mikayla Register 12 on the night. Barman was the Blue Hose leader at the net with three blocks.

Presbyterian took control of the first set early, going up 9-5 as Barman had a pair of early kills and an ace to put the Blue Hose up. CSU rallied back to tie the match up at 10-10, using a 5-1 run on back-to-back blocks by Parrott and kept the score even at 11-11 on a kill by Klinger.

The Blue Hose used Trimpe's serve to put some distance between the Bucs and PC, going up 14-11 on an ace. CSU rallied to cut the deficit down to one point on four separate occasions with the last coming at 21-20 on a kill by Katrina Houston, but Barman recorded three of the last four Presbyterian points, combining for a block with Hall, before back-to-back kills gave the Blue Hose the 25-22 set win.

Presbyterian used a 9-3 run out the gates in coasting to the 25-15 set victory. Charleston Southern narrowed the gap down to 9-8 on a 5-0 run as LaVenice had a pair of kills during the stretch, but PC followed with a 10-3 run in going up 19-11 in going up 2-0 as the teams headed into the break.

Sets three and four were the most contested of the night, featuring 28 ties and 13 lead changes of the two frames as Charleston Southern battled their way back into the match.

Presbyterian took the first three points of the set on Frank's serve as Hall and Berryman provided early kills, but the Bucs took three points back for the first tie in the frame at 3-3 following a Klinger kill. Neither team was able to build more than a two-point advantage until the very end as Presbyterian took a 23-22 lead on a kill by Rachel Hall. Charleston Southern responded with the final three points of the set as Klinger put in the tying kill, while LaVenice come up with the solo block and kill to close out the 25-23 Buccaneers set win.

The fourth set was another back-and-forth battle featuring 14 ties and eight lead changes as both teams gave up three point leads in the set. Presbyterian went up 8-5 on a solo block by Halle Tripp, but CSU rattled off a 4-0 run to take the 9-8 advantage. With the Bucs ahead 13-10, Presbyterian answered with a 5-0 run to go up 15-13 on a kill by Hall, before CSU answered with a 4-0 run of their own as the teams struggled to build a clear advantage.

Facing match point at 24-23 on a kill by PC's Berryman, the Buccaneers offense again rallied, taking the final three point of the set as Windsor drove home the tying kill, before Houston put away the set winner as CSU pushed the match into the fifth set with the 26-24 win.

The deciding fifth set was close early as CSU and PC split the first eight points, before a 5-1 run sparked by three Barman kills gave the Blue Hose the 9-5 lead. Charleston Southern cut the deficit down to one point at 11-10 as LaVenice put in the kill, but the Blue Hose continued to push their lead, setting up match point at 14-11 on a kill by Barman.

LaVenice placed in her 19th kill of the night to extend the match to 14-12, giving the CSU crowd hope that the Buccaneers could again pull of the comeback, but Barman slammed home the final kill to end the night as PC escaped with the 15-12 victory.

Charleston Southern is back in action tomorrow afternoon as the Buccaneers host Winthrop inside the Buc Dome. First serve between the Bucs and Eagles is set for 2 p.m.

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