Sept. 2, 2013
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RICHMOND, Ky. - Marshall volleyball dropped a 3-1 decision to Eastern Kentucky on Monday afternoon in Richmond, Ky.
The Herd dropped to 1-3 on the season, while the Colonials improved to 4-0.
"Being down two outside hitter in this match was tough," Head Coach Mitch Jacobs said. "I thought we played hard and together. We played very unselfish and as a team. We just didn't have enough time to overcome the injuries to prepare for a tough EKU team."
Another outstanding performance by freshman middle blocker Ally Kiekover wasn't enough to boost the Herd over EKU. Kiekover, who led Conference USA in hitting percentage (.447) entering the match, tallied a career-high and match-best 23 kills while hitting .286. She also posted three service aces, two blocks and six digs.
"Kiko (Kiekover) gave us an incredible spark today," Jacobs added. "She just plays so hard and you can really see the passion she plays with. Her performance today was great. She moved over and played outside hitter today, due to some injuries. She really stepped up when we needed someone to. I also thought Elyse played well for us."
Freshman outside hitter, Elyse Panick, recorded her first collegiate double-double by posting 11 kills and 15 digs. She also tallied a career-best and match-high five total blocks.
Senior outside hitter Dorothy Rahal collected a team-best 19 digs while junior setter Sammie Bane recorded a team-high 52 assists. Second on the team in kills was senior middle blocker Sacha Byous-McConnell, who tallied 16 kills with a match-best .297 hitting percentage.
Eastern Kentucky was led by junior outside hitter Alexis Plagens, who tallied 22 kills with a .245 hitting percentage while sophomore setter Mallori Moffat recorded a match-best 56 assists.
Marshall hitting percentage was .211 for the match while Eastern Kentucky only hit .174. The Herd also out-blocked the Colonials 12 to 7. MU hurt themselves by the number of unforced errors with nine service errors and allowing eight service aces.
The Colonials won the first set, 30-28 after rallying back from five down. Marshall took the second set 25-22, before losing the final two sets. In the third set, the Herd was up 24-22 and had the game in its sights before dropping the set 26-24. In the final set, EKU got off to a 5-0 start and led much of the way before the Herd got within one (23-24) before dropping the set 25-23.
"EKU is a much improved team from what we faced a year ago," Jacobs added. "We just couldn't maintain their energy throughout the match."
Marshall will travel to take on Morehead State on Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET. The Eagles are 1-2 on the season after winning their last match against Cincinnati.