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Aug. 30, 2014

Final Stats | Photo Gallery media-icon-photogallery.gif

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina volleyball team moved to 2-0 on the season with a four-set win over Jacksonville by the scores of 25-23, 25-14, 20-25 and 25-17 on Saturday afternoon in the Gamecock Invitational at the Volleyball Competition Facility.

The Gamecocks came up big at the net, holding a 16-9 advantage in blocks to drop the Dolphins, a NCAA Tournament participant last year, to 0-2 on the season. Carolina also out-hit Jacksonville .157-.106 and held the edge in aces (6-4) and digs (52-48).

Sophomore outside hitter KoKo Atoa-Williams led the way with her first career double-double, matching her career-high in kills with 12 and setting a career-high with 10 digs. Freshman outside hitter Taylr McNeil pitched in nine kills, nine digs and three blocks. Junior middle blocker Darian Dozier pitched in five kills and a career-high 11 blocks, including a career-high three block solos. Junior setter Kellie McNeil dished out 21 assists and added three kills, eight digs and four block assists, and senior Mikaela Christiaansen collected a team-high 15 digs.

Outside hitter Sammie Strausbaugh paced Jacksonville with 19 kills and 10 digs, while Emily Laskelle finished with 15 kills. Setter Jissian Gesualdo had a match-high 38 assists, and libero Mayara Prestes led the defense with a match-high 16 digs.

Game Changer
Dozier recorded career-highs in blocks (11) and block solos (three), including five blocks in the second set to help the Gamecocks win the set 25-14 to take a 2-0 lead.

Key Stat
The Gamecocks out-hit Jacksonville .280-.048 in the fourth set and came through with four of their 16 blocks on the way to winning the match.

• Atoa-Williams posted her first career double-double, matching her career-high with 12 kills and adding a career-high 10 digs.
• Dozier finished the afternoon with a career-high 11 blocks, including a career-high three block solos.
• South Carolina is now 19-0 in home tournaments under head coach Scott Swanson.
• The Gamecocks played in front of 1,528 fans, the fourth-largest crowd in VCF history.

Tweet of the Match

South Carolina head coach Scott Swanson
“I thought they played really well. We served a little bit easy, and they passed great. They came after us and really pushed us. I didn’t think we played very well all the way throughout the match. I thought we were tentative at times. We could have served tougher and played better defense. I think we need to play at a much higher level. It was a good lesson to lose game three and have to come back. I’m looking forward to seeing how we come back tonight against Georgia Tech.”

Up Next
South Carolina will wrap up the Gamecock Invitational tonight at 7:05 against Georgia Tech at the Volleyball Competition Facility. The match will be broadcast on SEC Network+ through eligible providers on the WatchESPN.