Volleyball rolls SE Louisiana at home

Michael Shipma

Sports Editor

Between the East Tennessee State University Tournament and its home opener, the Troy volleyball team went 2-2.

After defeating USC Upstate 3-2, the Trojans (2-2, 0-0 Sun Belt) earned back-to-back losses against Austin Peay and East Tennessee State. Troy bounced back in its home opener, however, shutting out Southeastern Louisiana to earn a 3-0 victory.

The Trojans dropped their first two sets against Upstate, 25-14 and 25-18, respectively, and looked to be on the verge of a sweep.

Seniors Sara Landis and Leah Causey helped give Troy the boost it needed in the last three sets, however, as the Trojans won 25-14, 25-16 and 15-7. Landis made 13 kills while Causey followed her with 10 of her own.

In the final three sets of its comeback win, Troy averaged a .255 hit percentage.

In its next two matches on Saturday, Troy didn’t fare as well. The Trojans struggled to come out on top in any of the three sets against Austin Peay, even though two of them were decided by two points.

Junior outside hitter Christina White led the Governors with 13 kills and helped lift Austin Peay past Troy in the third set after the Trojans took a 23-20 lead. The Governors claimed seven of the final 10 points to seal the Trojans’ first loss of the season.

Troy’s next and final match of the ETSU tournament, against the hosting Buccaneers, had nearly the exact same result as the previous match.

The visiting Trojans dropped the first two sets 25-22 and 27-25 respectively and were unable to keep up with the competition in the third, dropping the third and final set by a score of 25-17. Shaw and Causey again led the Trojans in kills, recording 10 and seven, respectively.

“I thought we competed well,” head coach Sonny Kirkpatrick said about his team’s play. “We found the things we really need to focus on this week in practice to get better for Tuesday and next weekend. I’m encouraged by the way they fought today, and we can’t wait to get back on the practice court on Monday.”

The Trojans returned for their home opener against SE Louisiana and came away with a win in three sets. Sophomore Jordyn Saulsberry led the home team in this contest, posting 12 kills, six digs and one block.

Despite claiming the match in three straight sets, the victory was far from an easy one as the Trojans squeaked by scores of 25-19, 25-20 and 25-20. Troy took advantage of the high-scoring affair, putting together a .330 hit percentage and 45 total kills.

The Trojans will take the court again on Friday, Sept. 2, when they take on Southern and Valparaiso in Trojan Arena in the Trojan Invitational. Start times for the matches are noon and 7 p.m., respectively.

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