Charleston, Ill. --- The Tennessee State University volleyball team fell in three straight sets to Eastern Illinois Friday night on the road.
The set scores were: 17-25, 23-25, 19-25.
TSU (12-8, 8-5 OVC) tallied 38 kills and only hit .142 in the contest while Eastern Illinois (7-16, 5-7 OVC) registered 41 kills behind a .333 hitting percentage.
The Panthers were led by Emily Franklin's 13 kills while Reynae Hutchinson added 11. Hutchinson also posted 11 digs for a double-double.
Eastern Illinois controlled the opening set jumping out to a 9-3 lead. A kill by Erika Moss cut the deficit down to five but the Tigers never recovered. The Panthers swelled the advantage back up to 23-14 before going on to win, 25-17.
In the second set, the teams battled to a 10-10 deadlock. TSU was holding on to a slight, 15-13, lead when four unanswered points by the Panthers put EIU on top, 17-15. The rest of the frame was closely contested. The score was, 24-23, when the Panthers used a timely kill to squeeze out the, 25-23, win.
Set three saw TSU fall behind by three before the Tigers outscored the Panthers, 6-3, to knot the score at 16-16. From there the teams went point-for-point as TSU seemed determined to force a fourth set. The Tiger rally, however, eventually fell short as the Panthers used a 6-0 run to close the set and seal the win.
EIU held the advantage in blocks, 16-4, and digs, 40-35.
TSU returns to action tomorrow against SIU Edwardsville. Match-time is slated for 2 p.m. at the Vadalabene Center.