September 3, 2016

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The University of Tennessee at Martin volleyball squad notched another win today during the final day of the Little Rock Invitational, as the Skyhawks swept Arkansas-Pine Bluff (25-13, 25-11, 25-19) this morning before falling in three sets to host Little Rock (21-25, 24-26, 13-25) this afternoon.

Following the conclusion of the Little Rock match, junior Macy Reigelsperger was named to the all-tournament team. The middle blocker from Coldwater, Ohio dialed up 29 kills, 15 digs, six blocks and three service aces in the tournament.

Madison Wessling compiled a team-best 22 kills in the two matches today, averaging 3.67 kills per set on a .444 hitting percentage. Kelly Lean accumulated 70 assists (11.67 per set) while Colleen Larson (22 digs) and Jemima Idemudia (eight blocks) paced the Skyhawk defensive attack.

UT Martin opens its 2016 home slate on Monday, Sept. 5 when it hosts a tri-match at Skyhawk Fieldhouse. UT Martin faces Northern Arizona at 11 a.m. and Alabama A&M at 7 p.m. Northern Arizona and Alabama A&M will also square off at 3 p.m.

Arkansas-Pine Bluff

Idemudia had 13 kills and seven blocks as the Skyhawk offense rolled to a 3-0 triumph over Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

The Lady Lions took a 6-2 lead in the first set but UT Martin found its groove midway through the set. Arkansas-Pine Bluff held an 11-9 advantage before the Skyhawks delivered a 16-2 run to take the lead for good. Idemudia had a hand in three straight points to give UT Martin its first lead since the opening point of the match. Jamie Scherb then took over, piecing together three straight service aces to give the Skyhawks a 19-12 edge. Arkansas-Pine Bluff followed with a kill but UT Martin rounded out the set with six unanswered points. Idemudia was responsible for two kills during that stretch to help the Skyhawks take the early momentum.

Idemudia had four kills on six swings in the first set for UT Martin, who had just one error on 31 attempts for a .355 attack percentage.

UT Martin took advantage of three straight Arkansas-Pine Bluff attack errors to take a -5-1 lead in the second set. Idemudia had three kills in a quick stretch to result in a double-digit lead for the Skyhawks at 14-4. Sarah Shaw then picked up three consecutive kills for UT Martin to make the score 19-7 in favor of the Skyhawks. Wessling closed out the second set with back-to-back kills to propel UT Martin to a 2-0 advantage.

The Skyhawk offense continued to blaze in the second set, as UT Martin hit .481 (15 kills against two errors) in 27 attempts. Shaw was a perfect 5-for-5 in swings while Larson scooped up a team-best five digs for the Skyhawks.

Idemudia had a solo block and a kill to help UT Martin claim a 4-1 lead in the third and final set. The Lady Lions tied the set at 4-4 until six unanswered Skyhawk points – including three more aces by Scherb – extended UT Martin’s advantage. Arkansas-Pine Bluff fought back to even the set three more times but Wessling went off for four kills during a 7-1 Skyhawk stretch that closed out the victory.

Wessling and Idemudia both produced five kills while Lean (12 assists) and Scherb (eight digs) also chipped in for UT Martin in the third set.

Little Rock

Wessling (12 kills with a .550 hitting percentage) and Lean (game-high 38 assists) had remarkable individual efforts for the Skyhawks but the Trojans hit .457 in a three-set win.

Alisha Erves – who hit .889 with eight kills in the match – helped UT Martin claim an early 7-5 lead in the first set. Erves (kill), Rachel Noffsinger (service ace) and Shaw (kill) combined for a 3-0 run that gave the Skyhawks an 11-10 lead. UT Martin maintained the lead at 15-14 before three unanswered points by Little Rock forced the Skyhawks to call a timeout. After Wessling and Shaw each came through with kills to tie the score at 17-all, Reigelsperger kept UT Martin close with a pair of kills. However, the Trojans were able to secure the last three points of the set to take a 1-0 lead.

Lean was credited with an assist on each of the Skyhawks’ 16 kills in the first set.

UT Martin took its first lead of the second set after four consecutive points provided the Skyhawks with a 9-6 lead. Little Rock would tie the set at 9-apiece but UT Martin reclaimed the advantage with a mini 3-0 run. The Trojans responded with five straight points but Erves would soon power through back-to-back kills to keep the Skyhawks within a single point at 18-17. UT Martin trailed 22-19 but put itself in position for set point after an Idemudia kill made the score 24-23. Little Rock followed with the final three points to go on top by a 2-0 margin.

In six attempts, Wessling had five kills in the second set, as Lean aided the Skyhawk attack with 12 assists.

Little Rock began the final set with a 6-1 advantage but Idemudia accounted for two straight UT Martin kills to pull the Skyhawks within three points (7-4). The Trojans then scored 11 of the next 14 points before a Shaw kill made the score 18-8. Lean added a pair of kills from that point forward but UT Martin would not get back within single-digits for the duration of the match.

The Skyhawks hit .276 in the third set while Larson was responsible for nearly half (five) of UT Martin’s 11 digs in the final stanza.

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