Sept. 14, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, ALA. - Krystal Rivers posted a match-high 18 kills to lead the Alabama volleyball team to a 3-1 (25-20, 23-25, 25-23, 25-15) win over the South Alabama Jaguars on Saturday morning. The Crimson Tide is now 3-0 in the Hampton Inn Bama Bash and improves to 7-2 on the season. South Alabama falls to 4-5 and wraps up the tournament with a 2-1 record.
After being held without a kill in the opening set, Rivers average 6.00 kills per set over the final three sets. Her 18 kills came on 29 swings with just four errors for a .483 hitting percentage. Rivers was one of two players for the Tide to reach double figures in kills, as Laura Steiner finished the match with 15 kills. Katherine White and Brittany Thomas had nine kills each and Mattie Weldy added seven kills in three sets.
Sierra Wilson had a match-high 52 assists to go along with seven digs for the Tide, Kryssi Daniels had a match-high 14 digs and Caitlin Bernardin chipped in with nine digs.
Mechell Daniel led the Jaguars with 17 kills and Nikki Gittens added 10. Emily Hundt had 36 assists and Kelley Little led the Jags with 10 digs, while Daniel and Abby Baker added nine digs each.
After getting off to a slow start, Alabama finished the match with a .280 hitting percentage, while holding South Alabama to a .200 mark in the four-set match.
Alabama took a 1-0 lead in the match following a 25-20 victory in the opening set. With the score knotted at 15-15, Alabama went on a 4-0 run thanks to a pair of hitting errors by South Alabama and kills by Steiner and White to open a 19-15 advantage. The teams exchanged points the rest of the set before a Thomas kill ended the set.
South Alabama answered by winning the second set, 25-23. With the score tied at 16-16, the Jaguars went on a 4-0 run to take a 20-16 lead. Although Alabama tied the set at 22-22 following a kill by Rivers, South Alabama got kills by Mallory Moore and Mechell Daniel for set points at 24-22. After a kill by Steiner got the Tide within one, Nikki Gittens finished the set with a kill for the Jags, evening the match at 1-1.
In the third set, Alabama held a 14-13 lead before dropping five straight points to the Jags. Alabama came all the way back to take a 22-21 lead in the match before winning the set, 25-23, on a kill by White. The big player in the third set for the Tide was Rivers, who had eight kills on 11 swings with no errors in the third, for a .727 hitting mark in the frame.
Leading 2-1 in the match, Alabama posted a .542 hitting percentage in the fourth set en route to a 10-point (25-15) win. Rivers, Steiner and Andrea McQuaid combined for 12 of the Tide's 16 kills in the set. With the score tied at 5-5, UA went on a 4-0 run before racing out to a 14-7 lead, before eventually winning the set by double digits.
The Tide will play its final match of the Hampton Inn Bama Bash tonight at 7 p.m. against the UT-Martin Skyhawks at Foster Auditorium.
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