October 29, 2016

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MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin volleyball team was hampered by miscues today as the Skyhawks fell in three sets to Ohio Valley Conference-leading Murray State (20-25, 19-25, 15-25) at Skyhawk Fieldhouse.

UT Martin held numerous leads in each of the first two sets but was ultimately done in by 31 errors (14 attack, five service, five return, seven block).

Jemima Idemudia paced the Skyhawk offense with 11 kills (against just three errors) in 21 attempts, hitting .381 for the match. Alisha Erves added five kills and a .400 attack percentage while Kelly Lean registered 20 assists and eight digs. Defensively, Colleen Larson led the way for UT Martin (7-20, 3-9 OVC) with 12 digs.

An assisted block by Erves and Macy Reigelsperger opened the game’s scoring and provided the Skyhawks with an early edge. Murray State (16-8, 11-1 OVC) came back with the next three points but six ties followed before UT Martin reclaimed the lead at 10-9 after an Erves service ace. Idemudia came away with a kill to push the Skyhawk advantage out to 13-11 but the Racers answered with five straight points to ignite an 8-1 spurt. UT Martin would close the gap to four points on five more occasions but wouldn’t get any closer the rest of the way.

Idemudia accounted for four of the Skyhawks’ 10 kills while Larson tallied five digs in the opening set.

UT Martin received its first two points of the second set via Idemudia kills but Murray State soon took a 6-3 lead. Erves then caught fire – securing three kills in a row to help the Skyhawks turn a three-point deficit into a 13-10 lead. UT Martin maintained its lead for a brief period before four ties followed. After an Idemudia kill evened the score at 16-all, the Racers concluded the set on a 9-3 run to take a 2-0 lead in the match.

For the second consecutive set, Larson scooped up five digs to head the Skyhawk defensive attack.

Murray State scored the first nine and 13 of the first 14 points of the third set. A 5-1 run by UT Martin got the Skyhawks within single digits and moments later, a pair of Idemudia kills sandwiched around a Hannah Phillips service ace made the score 23-15. However, UT Martin’s early deficit was too large to overcome.

Idemudia had four of the Skyhawks’ seven kills in the third set, as she hit .571 with zero errors in the stanza.

UT Martin begins a three-game road swing next weekend when it travels to Eastern Illinois (Nov. 4) and SIUE (Nov. 5).

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