Aug. 22, 2015
COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina volleyball team played in its first match-like atmosphere on Saturday at its annual Garnet and Black match at the Carolina Volleyball Center, and the contest ended in a 2-2 tie.
Black won a back and forth first set 26-24 before Garnet responded with a 25-18 win in set two and a 25-20 victory in the third set. Garnet built a 21-18 lead in the fourth and final set, but Black closed out the frame on a 7-2 run to win the set and end the match in a tie.
Garnet out-hit Black .193-.160 and had more digs (69-63) and blocks (13-9), while Black finished the afternoon with the edge in kills (58-49).
Junior outside hitter Dessaa Legros paced the Black team with a double-double, recording 16 kills and 12 digs. Senior Sarah Blomgren pitched in 15 kills, while freshman outside hitter Courtney Furlong added seven kills, seven digs and three blocks. Junior middle blocker Jacqy Angermiller finished with six kills and four blocks, and junior libero Megan Kirkland finished with 18 digs.
Junior outside hitter Koko Atoa-Williams led Garnet with 15 kills and 14 digs, while senior middle blocker Darian Dozier contributed 10 kills and six blocks. Freshmen Jesse Turner and Callie Brown delivered nine and six kills, respectively, while senior middle Elizabeth Johnbull finished with five kills and six blocks. Junior libero Joely Cabrera tallied 18 digs.
Freshman setter Aubrey Ezell and Gamecock assistant coach Shonda Cole played for both the Garnet and Black squads and finished with 40 and 41 assists, respectively. Ezell also had six kills and 14 digs.
After Garnet built a 21-18 lead in the fourth set, Black used a 7-2 run, including a pair of kills by Legros, to win the set and end the match in a 2-2 tie.
Legros finished with a match-high 16 kills and added 12 digs to record her first double-double as a Gamecock.
South Carolina head coach Scott Swanson
“I thought it was good. We made it about as even as we could. We had Shonda (Cole), our assistant coach, setting, and our backup setter is still recovering from a broken leg. We are kind of winging it in certain positions, but I think the kids have adapted really well. They’ve taken it in stride and still work hard no matter what. Once we get our gym where it needs to be as far as all of our healthy bodies and we are running an offense like we want to run on both sides, it’s going to help the defensive side as well. Overall I was really happy with the effort.”
The Gamecocks open their 2015 season at home as they are slated to host the Gamecock Invitational on Aug. 28-29. Carolina will kick off the weekend against Southeastern Louisiana on Friday at 7 p.m. and will face North Carolina Central (1 p.m.) and North Carolina State (7 p.m.) on Saturday at the CVC.