COLUMBIA, S.C. - Charleston Southern fell in both matches on Saturday afternoon to close out the Carolina Classic, falling to South Carolina in the early match, 3-1, while dropping a 3-2 decision at against East Carolina in the tournament finale.
CSU's Katrina Houston was named to the Carolina Classic All-Tournament team after leading the Bucs with 3.86 kills per set, 1.93 digs per set and a .187 hitting percentage on the weekend.
CSU continues the 2015 season on the road on Monday night in a quick turnaround as the Bucs travel to Savannah State. First serve between the Bucs and the Tigers is set for 6 p.m.
South Carolina 3, Charleston Southern 1 (25-23, 21-25, 13-25, 20-25)
Addison Kaderli had a team-high 13 kills as the Buccaneers battled back to take the first set from the host Gamecocks on Saturday afternoon at the Carolina Classic before falling in four sets to the Gamecocks.
CSU rallied from a 12-5 deficit in the first frame to tie the match up at 17-17 on a 12-5 run behind service aces from Ashley Higginbothem and Meredith Parrott, as well as a block by Parrott and Kaderli. The Bucs continued to take the first set against the Gamecocks with Connor Malone putting in the final kill, but South Carolina took control of the final three sets in closing out the victory.
Hannah Western led the Bucs with a .462 hitting percentage and seven kills on the afternoon, while Brooke Green set up the CSU attack with 24 assists from the floor. Higginbothem led the backline with 22 digs, while Kylie Klein had a match-high five blocks.
Sarah Blomgren led the Gamecocks with a team-high 16 kills, while Darian Dozier (15) and Dessaa Legros (12) both joined her in double-digits. Aubrey Ezell completed the double-double with 48 assists and 16 digs, while Joely Cabrera led the team with 22 digs from the backline.
With the Bucs trailing 12-5 in the first set, CSU took advantage of a Western kill to spark a comeback. The Bucs took six of the next eight points on their way to tying the set up at 17-17 on a Parrott ace. CSU continued their run late, building a 22-18 lead on a USC attack error on their way to Malone putting in the final point to give CSU the 1-0 advantage.
South Carolina broke open a 13-13 tie with a 5-0 run following a Dozier kill. The Gamecocks continued to press their advantage in going up 23-17 on their way to evening the match at 1-1 with the 25-21 win.
The Gamecocks took six of the first eight points in the third set in taking control of the frame early in cruising to the 25-13 set win.
Charleston Southern battled back in the fourth set, tying the frame at 10-10 on a Parrott kill. South Carolina answered with eight of the next 11 points to build a five point advantage and the Bucs were unable to pull with three the rest of the way in falling in the fourth set.
East Carolina 3, Charleston Southern 2 (25-21, 16-25, 19-25, 25-21, 9-15)
For the fifth time in the last seven matches Charleston Southern took an opponent to the wire led by Katrina Houston's 19 kills, but it was not enough for the Buccaneers in the end as CSU fell to the Pirates to close out the Carolina Classic on Saturday afternoon.
Addison Kaderli had 13 kills and Meredith Parrott was also in double-digits for the Bucs with 10 as CSU hit .231 from the floor as a team in the match. Cassidy Greer (26) and Brooke Green (21) combined for 47 assists, while Ashley Higginbothem led the team with 22 digs from the floor in the loss.
Ashton Mares led ECU with 21 kills as the Pirates hit .261 from the floor in the match. Natalie Montini added 14 kills, while Kierra Lee-Dunson had 13 kills in the win. Sabrina Gonzalez set up the offense with 48 assists, while Erika Figueroa led the team with 20 digs.
Charleston Southern took command of the opening set early as the Buccaneers recorded 12 of the first 16 points of the match in jumping to a 12-4 lead. The Pirates battled back in bringing the match within two points at 16-14 on a Lee-Dunson kill. However, the Bucs responded with the final three points of the match late with Houston putting in back-to-back kills to give CSU the 1-0 lead.
The Pirates battled back with wins in both the second and third sets. ECU took the second set 25-16 with an 8-4 run capped by a Montini kill, and she also closed out the third set with a kill as ECU took the 25-19 set win.
With ECU leading 8-6 in the fourth set, the Buccaneers went on a 6-0 run capped by back-to-back kills from Kaderli and Connor Malone. CSU never trailed the rest of the way, going up by as many as five points on their way to extending the match to the fifth set.
ECU led 8-3 at the crossover in the fifth set and though the Bucs battled back behind kills from Houston and Malone, CSU was unable to fight their way back into the match in falling to the Pirates.