NASHVILLE, Tenn. --- The Tennessee State volleyball team (5-26, 2-13 OVC) staged a tremendous come from behind effort on Friday night, defeating Samford (5-21, 3-13 OVC) at Kean Hall. The final score of the match was 3-1 in favor of the Lady Tigers. The win gives TSU its second Ohio Valley Conference win in the last seven years.
Friday night's victory was another historic night as junior Catherine Armwood (Durham, N.C.) was presented a game ball signed by her coaches and teammates for becoming the program's first 1,000d dig/500 kill club member.
After a lackluster performance in the opening game which saw the Bulldogs take the game, 30-14, Tennessee State did a complete turn around. Behind the serving of freshman Kelly Davis (Farrell, Pa.), the Lady Tigers scored seven unanswered points to go up, 13-2. The Bulldogs would manage to get as close as nine before Tennessee State pulled away for good for the 30-24 win.
After the break, Samford decided it was not going down without a fight. The teams went point for point until the score was knotted at 10. The serving of rookie Allyson Buckner (Humble, Texas) helped push Tennessee State for a narrow 12-9 lead. Once ahead, the Lady Tigers never looked back. Juniors Thereza Wright (El Paso, Texas), Armwood and Jennifer Washington (East Pointe, Ga.) all had excellent serving en route to TSU's 30-18 win.
Game four saw the Lady Tigers again jump out to an early lead. Samford would only be able to inch as close as nine points before Tennessee State rolled to the 30-21 win.
Tennessee State dominated Samford in blocking, recording 18 total team blocks to the Bulldogs' three. The Lady Tigers also narrowly out-dug Samford, 76-70.
Kristin Berryman and Hilary Gary each notched double-doubles for Samford with 10 kills and 10 digs and 10 kills and a team-high 17 digs, respectively. Also picking up double digit digs were Eileen Hattfield (16), Calloway Logan (13) and Allison Pickett (12).
Armwood led the Lady Tiger offensive effort with 15 kills and added 14 digs. Buckner contributed 11 kills and nine digs. Washington added a game-high 23 digs while Davis had 18 and sophomore LaQuata Marsh (Chattanooga, Tenn.) had 10.
The Lady Tigers conclude their 2004 season on Saturday as they host Jacksonville State at Kean Hall. Match time is set for 2 p.m.