CHARLESTON, S.C. - Charleston Southern was unable to overcome College of Charleston in a Lowcountry matchup in TD Arena on Tuesday night as the Buccaneers fell in straight sets to the Cougars, 25-18, 25-23, 25-16.
The Bucs fall to 0-4 on the season following the loss, while the Cougars improve to 3-1 on the year with the win.
Kylie Klein carried the Bucs through the first part of the opening set as the senior middle blocker recorded three early kills to tie the set up 7-7. Klein finished the frame with five kills on six attacks for an .833 hitting percentage in the frame to pace the Bucs with her final kill pulling CSU back within three at 18-15 in the frame. Hannah Western added a late kill to keep the Bucs in contention before CofC's Lauren Freed served out the frame to seal the 25-18 Cougars' win.
The teams battled through eight ties and three lead changes in the second set as the Bucs and Cougars fought their way through the closest frame in the match. CofC took a late five point lead in the frame riding a pair of kills by Freed and Meghan Murphy in building a 22-17 advantage. Hannah Western paced the Bucs' comeback late with a pair of kills, while Rachel Smith added a service ace to cut the margin down to 24-22. However, a CSU ball handling error ended the frame in favor of the Cougars as the Bucs went into the break trailing 2-0.
CSU and CofC went through nine lead changes and five ties early in the third frame before the Cougars took control of the set following a Krissy Mummey kill to take the 11-10 lead. Kills by Kylie Klein and Kalysia Bates attempted to stem the CofC tide, but the Cougars took 15 of the last 21 points to close out the win.
Inside the Numbers:
- Kylie Klein led the CSU attack for the first time in the 2017 season with a team-high eight kills and .471 hitting percentage on the night.
- Kalysia Bates hit .500 from the floor and the freshman middle blocker added a team-high five blocks (two solo, three assists).
- Rachel Smith set up the CSU offense with 28 assists and added six digs
- Madison Martin finished the night with a match-high 19 digs
News & Notes:
- Martin became just the 10th CSU player in program history to reach the 1,000 career dig mark. The junior libero achieved the mark during the second set tonight and finished the evening with 1,009 career digs at CSU.
- Martin became the third Buccaneer in the last three seasons to achieve 1,000 career digs joining former teammates Ashley Higginbothem (2015) and Taylor Allman (2016) to reach the mark.
- Bates' five blocks tied Klein's season-high five set against Jacksonville State over the weekend for the most by CSU in the 2017 season.
- Martin narrowly missing out on her third 20-plus dig match in the first four matches of the season, but finished the night with her third double-digit dig effort in 2017.
- Rachel Smith finished the match with 977 career assists with the Buccaneers, sitting just 23 away from becoming the 10th player in CSU history to reach the mark.
Charleston Southern returns to tournament play this weekend at the UAB Blazer Invitational on Friday as the Bucs take on the host Blazers at 1 p.m. and then return that evening for a 5 p.m. match against Georgia State. CSU closes out the weekend on Saturday afternoon against Western Illinois with first serve set for noon.