Beach Volleyball Rallies to Defeat Arizona St., TCU
Communications Student Assistant
FORT WORTH, Texas – The No. 8 ranked LSU beach volleyball team (8-5) showed tremendous resiliency on day one of the Horned Frog Challenge, battling back to pick up two wins in two tightly-contested matches over No. 11 Arizona State and TCU on Friday at the TCU Courts.
The team will wrap up the Challenge tomorrow, squaring off against No. 7 Arizona at 9 a.m. and finishing with a rematch against the Lady Sun Devils at 1:30 p.m.
“Today was a battle. I’m proud of the way we refused to lose. We were positive the whole day and responded so well to the pressure, and this was an incredible team effort,” said head coach Russell Brock.
“At the end of the day, we always feel like we can improve, but ultimately the goal is to come out and win, and we got the job done today.”
In the opening match against Arizona State, Emmy Allen and Lilly Kessler fell in straights on court two by scores of 11-21, 15-21. No. 4 pair Cati Leak and Maddie Ligon tied the match at one apiece after collecting a straight-set victory 23-21, 21-15.
The Lady Sun Devils reclaimed the lead after Claire Coppola and Kristen Nuss were defeated in two-sets, 16-21, 17-21, snapping their seven-match win streak. At the three, Olivia Powers and Katie Lindelow tied the match again, notching LSU’s second point with a big 21-14, 22-20 win in two sets.
In the second match against TCU, LSU found itself in an early 2-0 hole. Allen and Kessler took their match to three sets at the two, falling 21-16, 19-21, 7-15.
On court four, Leak and Ligon were also defeated in three sets, 21-9, 19-21, 12-15, as TCU tallied its second point. Once again, LSU would not be denied, putting together a furious comeback for the rally.
Lindelow and Powers worked their second-straight two set win by a score of 21-14, 21-17 for LSU’s first point. At the one, Coppola and Nuss followed suit, collecting a win in straights 21-19, 21-17 for their 10th win this season, tying the match 2-2.
No. 5 pair Young and Davenport notched their second-straight, match-clinching point for the Lady Tigers, picking up a win in a two-setter 23-21, 21-9 for a 3-2 Lady Tiger victory.
“Our focus is completely on tomorrow now,” added Brock. “We know that we have two tough teams ahead and that we will have to play even better to win both matches. That’s our mission.”
LSU has now won seven of its last eight matches, including two wins over top-15 competition. Lindelow and Powers also notched their eighth-straight win as a pair and the duo is now a combined 8-2 on the year.
LSU 3, Arizona State 2
1. Bianca Arellano/Whitney Follette (AZST) def. Claire Coppola/Kristen Nuss (LSU) 21-16, 21-17
2. Oluoma Okaro/Madison Berridge (AZST) def. Emmy Allen/Lilly Kessler (LSU) 21-11, 21-15
3. Olivia Powers/Katie Lindelow (LSU) def. Sage Patchell/Ellyson Lundberg (AZST) 21-14, 22-20
4. Cati Leak/Maddie Ligon (LSU) def. Kwyn Johnson/Frances Giedraitis (AZST) 23-21, 21-15
5. Riley Young/Megan Davenport (LSU) def. Cassidy Pickrell/Katelyn Carballo (AZST) 21-13, 18-21, 15-10
Ext. Taylor Bradley/Jeni Clark (LSU) def. Mia Rivera/Sydney Palmer (AZST) 18-21, 21-16, 15-11
LSU 3, TCU 2
1. Claire Coppola/Kristen Nuss (LSU) def. Haven Hill/Molly Scheel (TCU) 21-19, 21-17
2. Amy Neal/Jaelyn Greene (TCU) def. Emmy Allen/Lilly Kessler (LSU) 16-21, 21-19, 15-7
3. Olivia Powers/Katie Lindelow (LSU) def. Jillian Bergeson/Avery Arellano (TCU) 21-14, 21-17
4. Sarita Mikals/Ariah Palter (TCU) def. Cati Leak/Maddie Ligon (LSU) 9-21, 21-19, 15-12
5. Riley Young/Megan Davenport (LSU) def. Shane Peters/Claire Doyle (TCU) 23-21, 21-9
Ext. Taylor Bradley/Callan Molle (LSU) def. Jensyn Bledsoe/Jordan Terral (TCU) 21-16, 21-15