Gamecocks Drop Match at Arkansas
The Razorbacks held South Carolina to a season-low hitting percentage Wednesday night
FAYETTEVILLE, ARK. – South Carolina dropped a 3-0 decision at Arkansas (9-9, 3-5 SEC) Wednesday night. The Gamecocks were held to a season-low hitting percentage and drop to 14-4 overall and 5-3 in conference play.
SET 1: The Razorbacks’ serve game boosted them to an early lead, as three of their first 10 points came on aces and three blocks on defense keyed a 7-0 run that broke a 7-all tie. Arkansas was able to string that advantage out to the set win, 25-19. The Gamecocks were error-prone in the game, hitting just .162 with a pair of blocking errors and three service errors and no aces. Mikayla Shields shouldered the load offensively, taking almost half of the team’s total attacks (18) and leading the way with five kills.
SET 2: Arkansas jumped out to another big lead to begin the second set, 8-3, and were able to hold the Gamecocks at an arm’s length throughout the set in a 25-20 win to go up 2-0. South Carolina would trim the lead to one on three different occasions down the stretch, including 19-18, but weren’t able to string together the run needed to take the lead. The team’s attack percentage dipped to .118 in the set, with Shield’s four kills accounting for almost half of the team’s 10 total kills.
SET 3: The Gamecocks were primed for a comeback try early, taking a 13-11 lead, but gave up four straight points from there into the media timeout and would not be able to retake the lead in a 25-19 loss to drop the match. The team hit .150 in the set, with Mikayla Robinson and Brittany McLean leading the offense with three kills apiece.
- With her two aces Wednesday, Aubrey Ezell moved to 50 for the season. It’s a new career high for the senior, and she’s first Gamecock since Megan Hosp and Cally Plummer in 2002 to reach 50 aces in a season, still with 10 matches left on the schedule.
- Ezell also moved up to fourth in program history for career aces, now with 187. She passed Lori Rowe (1983-86) and now is three more aces away from entering the top three.
- Courtney Koehler’s 26 assists and 10 digs give the junior setter her third double-double of the season and first since Sept. 21.
- South Carolina’s team hitting percentage of .144 was the lowest of the season to date. The previous low was .175 at Rice on Aug. 31.
- Arkansas has now won four straight in the series, and is 7-2 at home against South Carolina over the last decade.
STAT OF THE MATCH: Arkansas dominated in the service game, with seven aces and just eight errors. Comparatively, South Carolina had only three aces with 10 errors on serve. Unforced errors plagued the Gamecocks all night, as the team also had four blocking errors and eight unforced (unblocked) attacking errors.
UP NEXT: With a few extra days of rest coming up, South Carolina will now turn its attention to Sunday, when it hosts Georgia (12-7, 3-5 SEC) for a 3 p.m. rematch at the Carolina Volleyball Center.