@HerdVolleyball Continues Win Streak with Fifth Straight Sweep
Marshall has recorded five consecutive sweeps for the first time since 2007
DELAND, Fla. – Marshall volleyball improved its win streak on Wednesday night at Stetson (2-9) with its fifth consecutive sweep (25-18, 25-23, 25-15). The Herd improves to 9-3, winning its last five matches and eight of its last nine.
Senior libero Allie Kellerman was unstoppable from the service line. The Louisville, Ky., native recorded six aces, tied for ninth all-time in a single match and first time since 2007. Kellerman is tied with Kristin Marcum (2006-09), Stephanie Cahill (2004-07) and Uche Ndubisi (2004-07). Kellerman also had a match-high 16 digs.
Offensively, it was a team effort for the Thundering Herd as it featured nine players with at least a kill. Kassidy Lemons had a career-high nine kills to lead Marshall. Cassie Weaver finished the match with eight kills, while Madison Hill had seven kills on 12 swings for a .417 hitting percentage. Kayla Simmons had a team-high 22 assists and Madelyn Cole followed with 13 of her own. Cole recorded her fifth double-double of the season with 10 digs.
The Herd started the match similar to its last four by jumping out to a lead. Lemons provided a spark early on with three kills to give Marshall a 6-3 lead. Stetson didn’t go away and tied the set at eight-all. After the two teams traded kills, Kellerman picked up two aces in succession to give the Herd a two-point lead. MU pushed its lead to four (13-9) following a Hatters’ attacking error and block by Shelby Conley and Ally Kiekover, which forced a Stetson timeout. Marshall came out of the timeout strong and never lost the lead and won the first set, 25-18.
The second set proved to be the most difficult one for Marshall as it featured nine ties and four lead changes. The Herd leaped out to a 5-2 lead with kills from Weaver and Lemons, but the Hatters rallied and scored three points in a row to tie the set. From there, the two teams couldn’t gain separation until Marshall scored seven straight points to take a 21-17 lead, which included back-to-back-to-back aces by Kellerman. MU held on to take the set, 25-23, despite a strong Stetson rally that brought the match within one point, twice.
Marshall came out of the break focused to win its 15th-straight set by taking a commanding 7-3 lead. The Herd’s lead only improved as the set went on, as it led 17-8, following a Justice Craft kill. Marshall pushed its lead to double digits (21-11) with an ace from Cole. The Thundering Herd clinched its fifth consecutive sweep and a 25-15 set win with a Conley kill.
Quotes by head coach Mitch Jacobs
On the Herd’s ball control and service game…
I felt our focus on our ball control tonight was as good as it's been against a good serving team. That enabled us to keep the offensive pressure on Stetson who had a very good defensive night. I thought our service game was the biggest key in turning the match our way. We kept a lot of pressure on Stetson from start to finish and had some service runs that helped us separate the score especially in sets one and three. Kellerman's service run in set two dug us out of a hole and put us into a position to be able to win the set.
On Kellerman, Lemons and Pelton’s play…
Allie Kellerman had a special night. Her ball control was on point. Her service game was the best it's been all season and whenever it seemed like Stetson was making a run, Allie was there to dig another ball. The way she captained the back row tonight was exactly what we're used to seeing out of Kellerman in every practice. There were quite a few outstanding individual efforts but mostly you got to look at our team playing as a unit and picking each other up. Kassidy Lemons and Taylor Pelton did a solid job tonight filling in for Jac'cara [Walker] tonight.
Looking ahead to Friday’s match…
Now we put full focus on Jacksonville for our first match in the Gator Invitational.