Oct. 20, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Marshall volleyball defeated Conference USA foe UAB in straight sets (28-26, 25-20, 25-22) on Sunday afternoon at Bartow Arena.
The Thundering Herd improved to 12-11 (6-2 C-USA) on the season while the Blazers fell to 15-9 (4-4 C-USA).
“I can’t even remember the last time we’ve won here (2007),” commented coach Mitch Jacobs. “UAB is just so good at home, that I can honestly say this might be our best win this year. They are well coached and very discipline in their system.”
Leading the way for the Herd was senior middle blocker Sacha Byous-McConnell (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), who tallied 15 kills with a .583 hitting efficiency while senior outside hitter Laura Der (Clarksville, Ind.) also collected 15 kills.
“Lauren (Legge) was huge in game three as she started to get the timing of their slide down and made a big difference with a couple blocks and several block touches,” added Jacobs. “Sacha (Byous-McConnell) was again big for us as well as Laura (Der), who really did everything right for us after she had a tough first half of set one.”
The Blazers came out swinging early and forced the Herd into an early timeout down 6-2. Marshall was unable to gain much momentum coming out of the first timeout and Jacobs was forced to call his second timeout down 13-6. The Herd responded to pull the set within two, 20-18, forcing UAB into its first timeout. Both teams went back-and-forth before Marshall was able to overcome the deficit to win 28-26.
UAB looked to bounce back in the second frame against Marshall and took an 11-7 advantage. The Herd answered by taking 8 of the next 12 points from the Blazers to tie things at 15 apiece. The teams traded the next few points before Marshall found its offensive edge to defeat UAB 25-20.
The third set started out tight and was tied at 6 before Marshall when on 6-2 run to force UAB into a timeout. The Herd went on another 6-2 run out of the timeout to force the Blazers into its second timeout of the set down 18-10. UAB answered this time with a 7-3 run to force Marshall into its first timeout leading 21-17. The Herd won the set 25-22 behind a big kill from Byous-McConnell.
“I’m just over the top excited to see our girls come into a place we’ve had so little success and come out with the win,” Jacobs concluded.
Marshall will return home to play conference opponent Charlotte Saturday at 2 p.m.