November 07, 20151st2nd3rd4th5thFinal
TSUTeam StatsJSU
.244Hitting Pct..237
168Total Attacks152
KillsZUHLKE - 16
AssistsHART - 46
AcesZUHLKE - 1
DigsKIRK - 19
BlocksROMBACH - 3
Tigers Drop Five-Set Battle to Jacksonville State
Saturday, November 7, 2015
Tigers Drop Five-Set Battle to Jacksonville State

Jacksonville, Ala. – The Tennessee State volleyball team (13-13, 8-6 OVC) battled through five sets before dropping the match 3-2 to Jacksonville State (14-19, 4-10 OVC) on Saturday.

With things tied 8-8 in the first, the Tigers used a four-point run, highlighted by a service ace from senior Madison Halterman and a kill from freshman Zahria Graham, to take an 11-8 lead. The Gamecocks would battle back with a 7-1 run to take a 15-12 lead over the Tigers. Down by six, the Tigers would attempt at a comeback with a 7-3 run, but would fall short as JSU took the set 25-22. 

The Tigers jumped out to an early 9-4 lead in the second before forcing Jacksonville State into their first timeout of the game. Multiple kills and blocks would keep the Tigers in the lead and give TSU an eight-point advantage over the Gamecocks (19-11). A 6-2 run by TSU, highlighted by a service ace from senior Haley Hampton and kills from Graham, freshman Ayanna Chase and junior Taylor Patterson, would allow the Tigers to tie up the match with a 25-14 set win.

A 9-1 run in the third allowed the Tigers to take an early 11-5 lead over Jacksonville State. Three Tigers kills and a service ace from sophomore Samantha Beltran would extend their lead to 15 before Jacksonville called their second timeout of the game. Continued offensive pressure from the Tigers would stretch their lead to eight (21-13), putting the Tigers just four points away from their second set win of the day. A bad set from the Gamecocks, kills from Patterson and a block from Graham would give the Tigers a 25-17 third set win and a 2-1 advantage in the match.

Down 20-9 in the fourth, the Tigers would use a 10-1 run to cut the deficit to just two points making the score 22-19. Kills from Patterson would put the Tigers a point away from tying things up at 24, but a Gamecock kill would give Jacksonville State a 25-23 fourth-set win, forcing a fifth set.

Things were back and fourth in the fifth, with the Gamecocks leading 8-6 at the switch. Jacksonville State defense would keep the Tigers at a negative attacking percentage for the remainder of the set, making it hard for the Tigers to produce. With the score 11-9, the Gamecocks used a four-point run to take the fifth set 15-9 and the match 3-2. 

The Tigers hit .244 on the day; recording 68 kills through five sets. TSU tabbed 66 digs and 64 assists for the contest. 

Junior Taylor Patterson led the Tigers offensively, notching a season high 17 kills for a .310 attack percentage and recording nine digs and two blocks. Chloe Watson notched her sixteenth double-double of the season with 11 kills and 18 digs. Freshman Zahria Graham notched 14 kills on the day with five digs and three blocks.

Sophomore Samantha Beltran hit a team-high .545 with seven kills on 11 attempts. Beltran dished out another team-high 58 assists through the five sets and recorded five digs. 

Senior Madison Halterman led the team defensively with 22 digs.

The Tigers return home one last time to play Belmont University on Wednesday night at 6 p.m.. The game will play host to Senior Night, where seniors Haley Hampton and Madison Halterman will be recognized for their athletic careers and accomplishments at Tennessee State.

For news and updates on Tennessee State volleyball, follow @TnStateVB.