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Gamecocks Sweep Charlotte in Home Opener
Women's Volleyball  . 

Gamecocks Sweep Charlotte in Home Opener

The team now heads to the upstate for matches Thursday and Friday

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina volleyball defeated Charlotte in its home opener Tuesday night, 3-0 (25-16, 25-12, 25-22), in front of a crowd of 1,721 fans. The Gamecocks are now 4-3 overall this season and have won three matches in a row. Charlotte stands at 4-4.
The Gamecocks needed only 10 kills to take the opening game, as the 49ers committed 10 attack errors – seven unforced – en route to a 25-16 decision. Claire Edwards had a strong set overall for the team, recording two kills, a service ace and three total blocks and spearheaded a 9-1 run to start the set. Mikayla Robinson and Britt McLean added three kills apiece for the offense.
“I thought we came out really well, we were really aggressive and that was one of our keys for today, making sure we were putting our self in a position to earn points and try to make plays as difficult as possible for Charlotte,” head coach Tom Mendoza said.
Set two would be where the offense would shine brightest, out-hitting Charlotte .483 to .000 and taking a 2-0 lead in the match behind a 25-12 win. The team had 14 different players take the court in the set, 10 of whom would record a kill. Alicia Starr had a high of three kills on six swings, and the defense held Charlotte to just six kills total in the set to get the decisive win.
South Carolina needed to lock back in to close out the sweep, falling behind multiple times before coming back to get a 25-22 win and cap the win. The 49ers cut down on their earlier miscues and hit .321 in the set, also adding four blocks to push ahead 9-6 early. Though the Gamecocks were able to push back ahead, Charlotte tied the set up at 17 before a 5-1 run put them up for good. Mikayla Shields would be dominant as an attacker in the set, putting away six kills on just seven attempts, and Jess Vastine added four kills, three digs and two aces in the set, the second ace coming as the match-clinching point.
The team is now on the back half of its stretch of six games in seven days, but the competition only gets tougher. Up next, South Carolina heads upstate to Clemson for the two day Clemson Classic tournament. Thursday features a 7 p.m. first serve against the rival Tigers, and Friday features a 6 p.m. match against No. 9 Wisconsin.
For updates on the team all season, follow @GamecockVolley on Twitter.