CONWAY, S.C. -- The UTA volleyball team suffered a three-set sweep (18-25, 17-25, 20-25) at defending Sun Belt Conference Champion Coastal Carolina in the league road opener for the Mavericks, on Friday night at the HTC Center.
UTA (7-9, 1-2 Sun Belt) opened a five-game road swing with the match at Coastal Carolina (6-6, 3-0 Sun Belt), with the Chants hosting the Mavs in the CCU home opener. Coastal, powered by preseason All-American Leah Hardeman, extended its record at the HTC Center to 19-2 all-time with the win on Friday over the Mavs.
The Mavs showed strong signs in the match, including an early first-set lead and a mid-set run in the second but the Chants powered through courtesy of a 9-0 run in the first and a 5-0 run to open the third. The Mavs fought back in the third set to tie it at 13-13 but CCU was able to finish off the win.
LEADING THE MAVS
Senior Qiana Canete had a team-high nine kills, adding eight digs to lead the UTA attack. Freshman Tessa Harfield charted a career-high six kills with two blocks, while junior Zhanelle Geathers and sophomore Kylie Jedlicka each had five kills, with Jedlicka owning a team-high 12 digs. Freshman Kailyn Gilbreath had a team-best 23 assists, adding two kills, with Allie Deese sporting a pair of kills. Madison McConnell had a kill and senior Ashlynn Ford finished with eight digs. Libero Libbie Vickers added nine digs.
UTA continues its five-match road trip with a matchup at Appalachian State (6-10, 1-1 Sun Belt) on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. CT.
UTA used a strong start to build a 3-1 lead, getting early kills from Geathers and McConnell. The Mavs built their lead to 5-2 with kills from Jedlicka and Ashlynn Ford. UTA opened up with four kills in its first 10 swings but Coastal responded with a 9-0 run to take an 11-5 lead with UTA answering with a 2-0 lead, capitalized by a kill from Harfield. Terminations from Canete helped UTA trade points to take it to 17-9 and a 2-0 run cut the lead. The Mavs rallied with a 4-0 run late in the set to curt the lead to 24-18 but the Chants finished it off for the 25-18 win.
Coastal opened the set on a 3-0 run and UTA evened it up at 4-4 after a kill from Harfield. The Chants used an 8-2 stretch to build an 11-7 lead and Jedlicka spurred a 2- run to cut it to 13-10 with a kill. After Harfield's kill cut the lead to 17-14, Coastal used its first timeout of the match. Geathers terminated a ball to make it 20-16 off the assist from Gilbreath but Coastal used a 4-0 run to take a 24-16 lead, finishing off a 25-17 win.
The Mavs opened up in an early hole as CCU stretched a lead to 5-0. Coastal built a 9-2 lead before Deese helped UTA spark a run to cut the lead to 10-7. UTA then went on a 4-0 run to cut the lead to 11-10 after a Canete ace, with the teams trading points to get the game to 13-12. Gilbreath's nifty kill ended a 2-0 run and evened up the set for the first time at 13-13. The Chants answered with a 6-0 run to help finish off the win.
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