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UTSA sweeps Georgia Southern to open Campbell Invitational

The 'Runners dealt the Eagles their first loss of the season

BUIES CREEK, N.C. — The UTSA volleyball team took down Georgia Southern 25-22, 25-23, 25-14 in their opening match of the Campbell Invitational at Gore Arena on Friday. 

The Roadrunners (5-2, 0-0 AAC) dealt the Eagles (5-1, 0-0 SBC) their first loss of the season in the sweep, halting what tied the Georgia Southern record for consecutive wins to start a season at five. 

Sophomore Mia Soerensen led the match in kills, logging 12, while junior Faye Wilbricht joined her in the double-digit kill club with 10. Not far behind, sophomore Katelyn Krienke posted nine terminations, while she and Soerensen each managed to hit over .300. 

Soerensen and senior Alicia Coppedge tied for the team lead in blocks, each halting three of the opposition's attacks, and sophomore Makenna Wiepert logged 32 assists and 11 digs for a double-double. Also boasting double-digit digs, senior Aliah Giroux had a club-high 12, and junior Ellie Turner 10. 

Four different Roadrunners recorded kills to open the first frame, resulting in a quick 6-0 UTSA lead. Back-to-back terminations by senior Cansu Günaydin and Krienke then saw the 'Runners advantage grow to seven and a 13-6 score line. The Eagles battled their way back to within two, as a kill for Allie Hair resulted in an 18-16 score, prompting a UTSA timeout. Coming out of the break, Georgia Southern knotted the contest ahead of terminations for Krienke and Coppedge that put UTSA up 22-20. After exchanging blows, an Eagle miscue and a Wilbricht kill put the finishing touches on the set for a 25-22 Roadrunner win. 

The second stanza was tightly contested through the opening stages until the Eagles strung together multiple rallies to go up 13-9. Shortly after, the Roadrunners surged for four straight scores as an ace for E. Turner issued the squad a 16-15 edge. Georgia Southern answered, regrowing a 19-16 advantage and inducing a UTSA timeout. Krienke, Wiepert, and E. Turner all recorded kills following the stoppage, tying the contest at 19. The battle raged on as each squad exchanged blows until the scoreboard read 23-23. From there, an Eagle miscue and a Günaydin kill delivered a 25-23 set win for UTSA. 

After Georgia Southern snagged the first two rallies in the third set, UTSA rattled off six straight in a stretch that featured multiple blocks and a kill for Soerensen. The Roadrunners then cruised, as an ace by sophomore Caroline Krueger, and consecutive kills by Wilbricht and Krienke helped UTSA achieve a 23-12 lead. Terminations by Krienke and Wilbricht shortly after capped off a 25-14 win and a sweep for the Roadrunners. 

The 'Runners have one more game on the docket Friday, as they battle host school Campbell in the nightcap, with a 6 p.m. CT start time scheduled at Gore Arena.

Keep up with UTSA Volleyball all season long on goutsa.com, and by following the program on Facebook at /UTSAVBall, Twitter @UTSAVolleyball, and on Instagram @utsa_vb.