GREENVILLE, S.C. – Sophomore Kym Coley hit .409 with ten kills as the Georgia Southern volleyball team snapped Furman's 18-match home winning streak with a 3-0 (25-12, 25-23, 25-15) win Saturday in Alley Gymnasium. The Eagles were the last team to defeat the Paladins on their home court, notching a 3-2 win in Alley on Sept. 25, 2010.
Georgia Southern came out strong in the first set, outhitting Furman .378 to .029. The Eagles built a quick 9-2 lead and never looked back, claiming a 25-12 set victory. The teams were tied with 18 digs apiece in the set, but Georgia Southern notched a 15 to eight kill margin.
The Eagles took an early 9-3 advantage in set two before the Paladins answered with a 7-4 run to come within three points at 13-10. Moriah Bellissimo connected on two kills and Georgia Southern capitalized off a Furman hitting error to push the lead to six, but Paladins chipped away at the lead and were within two points of the Eagles at 22-20.
A Furman hitting error put Georgia Southern back up by three before a block by senior Christina Curry and sophomore Christina Dorismond, coupled with a kill by Dorismond, sliced the lead to one point, 23-22. The Eagles gained match point following a Coley kill, but a service error by Meghan Morillo gave the Paladins another chance. A final kill from Meredith Paskert sealed the 25-23 set victory gave Georgia Southern a 2-0 lead at the break.
Georgia Southern led 15-4 in set three before Furman's 8-3 run kept the Paladins in the match at 18-12. The Eagles then connected on four-straight kills to go ahead 22-12, en route to a 25-15 set win to seal the victory.
"Georgia Southern was almost flawless in the first set," said Furman head coach Michelle Young following the match. "We hung in there with them for a while, but it was tough to overcome their level of play. We didn't pass and run our offense as well as we would like to, but overall, our girls never gave up. We're going to have to beat teams like Georgia Southern to reach our goals this season. Luckily, it's September and we have time to keep working on getting better."
Furman senior Chandler Ambrester recorded a team-high nine kills and added nine digs in the match, while junior Elle Ross paced the Paladin defense with 13 digs. Freshman Jo Wilks led Furman with 27 assists.
Jamie DeRatt notched a double-double for Georgia Southern (11-5, 2-0 SoCon), collecting 10 kills and 10 digs. Alexandra Beecher led the Eagles with 14 digs, and Kate Van Dyke added a team-high 37 assists.
Furman (11-4, 1-1 SoCon) returns to action on Tuesday when the Paladins play at Wake Forest at 6:30 p.m.