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Oct. 25, 2009

Box Score


Coach Somera

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Despite hitting .331 as a team, South Carolina could not overcome Arkansas in a four-set loss, 16-25, 25-19, 24-26, 20-25, on Sunday afternoon at the Volleyball Competition Facility.

Senior libero Sarah Cline led the Gamecocks (12-9, 4-8 SEC) with 15 digs, stretching her double-digit streak in the category to 26 matches dating back to last season. Senior outside hitter Ivana Kujundzic topped Carolina in kills with 18 and aces with three, while junior Megan Laughlin and senior Meredith Moorhead added 10 kills each. Moorhead hit .562, bested only by freshman Brandi Byers, who hit .727 (8-0-11). Arkansas (11-12, 5-7 SEC) hit .383 in the match and was led in kills by Jasmine Norton’s 25. Kelli Stipanovich posted 14 kills, while Kristin Seaton added 11. Razorback setter Lindsay Scanlan had a double-double with 49 assists and 10 digs, while Phoebe Bautista made 14 digs. Amanda Anderson had a match-best four aces.

Six Arkansas aces led the squad to a 25-16 set-one win. All four of Anderson’s aces came in the first, while Norton added two to go with five kills. The Hogs broke it open on Norton’s serve, going on a five-point run to take a 13-6 lead. Arkansas got three unassisted kills in the stretch, including two from Allison Johnson. Twice on Anderson’s serve, the Razorbacks had four-point runs, with each string including two of Anderson’s aces. A ball-handling call on the Gamecocks ended the first. The Hogs hit .464 in the first, while the Gamecocks posted a .391 clip.

The Gamecocks came back to take the second, 25-19. A five-point skein on Kujundzic’s serve put South Carolina up, 13-4, and the squad held on from there. Arkansas answered with a four-point string but never got closer than four points. Laughlin ended the second with her third kill of the frame. Kujundzic had eight kills while Cline had six of her digs in the second alone.

Arkansas held the advantage for most of the third set, getting four-point advantages on six occasions after the initial three-point run to go up, 8-4. The Gamecocks kept fighting, finally taking back the lead at 19-18 on a Laughlin ace. Arkansas went back up, 20-19, on a Gamecock hitting error, but the Gamecocks came right back to take the lead on back-to-back Kujundzic kills. A Norton ace put Arkansas back on top at 23-22, but a Kujundzic kill and a set error by the Hogs gave South Carolina a chance at set point. But Stipanovich tied up the frame again with a kill. Anderson put away an overpass to give Arkansas the chance to close it, and Bautista did just that at 26-24 with an ace. The Razorbacks hit .400 in the frame.

In set four, Arkansas once again got an early lead, making it 9-4 after a block and attack errors on South Carolina. The lead expanded to seven on a four-point Hog run led by three Norton kills. The Gamecocks closed to within two after a Razorback attack error, causing Arkansas to use a timeout. The break worked, as Stipanovich got two kills around a Bautista ace to close out the fourth at 25-20. Eight of Norton’s kills came in the final set.

The Gamecocks won only one stat category in blocks, marking the first time the squad has lost when winning that category. Cline moved into second all-time in digs in the first set, passing Jodi Thompson. Kujundzic moved into 10th in kills, passing Caryn Case, while senior Bridget Denson-Dorman now ranks ninth in assists at South Carolina, passing Katelyn Panzau.

South Carolina hits the road next weekend, playing at Mississippi State on Friday before going to Alabama for a Sunday afternoon affair.