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Gamecock Rally Falls Short at LSU
Women's Volleyball  . 

Gamecock Rally Falls Short at LSU

The team dug an 0-2 hole on the road before forcing the match to five sets

BATON ROUGE, LA. – South Carolina (12-7) suffered from a slow start Saturday in its series opener at LSU, falling behind two sets to none before rallying to push the match to five sets. The Gamecocks were unable to complete the comeback, though, and fell 25-18, 25-9, 21-25, 21-25, 15-8 in Baton Rouge. Riley Whitesides and Mikayla Robinson each finished in double digits for kills, but the Tigers (6-11) hit .312 in the match.
SET ONE: Fresh off another SEC Freshman of the Week award on Monday, Whitesides took the lead again to start the match. The Greenville, S.C. native totaled eight kills on 10 errorless swings, but the Gamecocks were unable to find secondary options and were shut down in a 25-18 loss. Outside of Whitesides’ production, the rest of the team finished with just five kills with seven errors on 24 attempts and LSU held a .324 to .176. 
SET TWO: The second set would be a quick one, LSU led wire-to-wire in a 25-9 score that put the home side up 2-0. The Gamecocks finished with just seven total kills in the set while the Tigers finished hitting .500 as a group.
SET THREE: Facing a must-win scenario from here on out, the Gamecocks pulled back on the Tigers’ momentum and earned a 25-21 win in the third. LSU claimed an early 10-6 lead, but a 5-0 run behind the serve line from Mallory Dixon rallied the squad. South Carolina nursed a modest lead, but was able to run off the final four points with little resistance. It would be the offense’s most efficient set of the afternoon, hitting .379 with 15 kills.
SET FOUR: After the offense stepped up in the third, the defense followed suit in the fourth to keep the comeback alive. South Carolina was able to hold the Tigers to their lowest efficiency rate of the match, hitting just .179, in a 25-21 final the send it to a fifth set. The combination of Whitesides and Robinson helped the team get out to a 10-4 start to the set and the lead grew to 17-9 before a late LSU rally. Robinson finished with five kills in the set to lead all Gamecock hitters.
SET FIVE: The Gamecocks weren’t able to complete the reverse sweep, running out of fuel in a 15-8 score in the final game. Out of a 3-3 score, LSU scored five of the next six points to take a lead it would not give back.
The Gamecocks aim to salvage the series finale at LSU on Sunday. The rematch begins at 2 p.m. ET and will air again on the SEC Network+.