BATON ROUGE, La.- The No. 12 ranked LSU beach volleyball team (9-4) split its matches on Saturday, defeating No. 10 Grand Canyon and falling to No. 3 Florida State in the first day of the LSU Beach Invitational tournament at Mango’s Beach Volleyball Club off of Sherwood Forest.
LSU will return to action tomorrow with a doubles bracket tournament starting at 8 a.m. at Mango’s. Pairings for the tournament will be announced prior to the matches tomorrow.
In the opening match against No. 10 Grand Canyon, Riley Young and Jeni Clark took their match on court four in straight sets 21-18, 21-18 to tally LSU’s first point of the match. Megan Davenport and Cheyenne Wood followed with a three-set victory at the five, lifting LSU to a 2-0 lead.
No. 1 pair Katie Lindelow and Ashley Allmer fell in two sets by a score of 21-19, 21-19. Cati Leak and Callan Molle secured the match for the Lady Tigers, posting a win in straight sets 21-14, 21-11 on court three. At the two, Helen Boyle and Lilly Kessler capped off the match with another straight set win 21-15, 21-15.
“We’ve honestly been talking all week about taking care of Grand Canyon,” said associate head coach Russell Brock. “We’ve been preparing for that, and we’ve been focused on that, and we were looking to execute well against that team. We felt like we matched up well against them, and taking one match at a time, that was our focus preparing and it showed.”
The lineup was shuffled for the second match against Florida State, where the Lady Tigers found themselves down 2-0 early. Davenport and Wood fell in straight sets 21-13, 21-11 on court five, and Young and Molle dropped their match at the four in a two-setter by a score of 21-13, 21-17.
On court one, Lindelow and Orellana were defeated in straight sets 21-15, 21-15, giving the Seminoles a 3-0 advantage. Boyle and Allmer lost in two sets 24-22, 21-13 at the two, and Leak and Kessler were also unable to garner a point, falling in straights 21-11, 21-11, giving Florida State the 5-0 victory.
“At Tulane (last week), we had a lot of people who were sick and hurting. We had to really shuffle our lineup,” explained Brock. “The way the rules are now, you have to reenter your lineup in a certain way, and it forced us into a situation where we kind of had to do what we did against Florida State.”
“We knew that we were going to be in this so we practiced some this week with some of other lineups, so I think it’s great for us to have the ability to switch it up a little bit in some fashion. Ultimately, we want to put our best lineup out there, and I think (the lineup against Florida State) wasn’t as good as it was before even though we were playing a really good opponent.”
LSU returns to action tomorrow in the final day of the LSU Beach Invitational with a doubles bracket tournament starting at 8 a.m.
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LSU Beach Invitational Day 1 Results-April 2, 2016
*Bold Indicates Winner
No. 12 LSU vs. No. 10 Grand Canyon (LSU wins 4-1)
No. 12 LSU vs. No. 3 Florida State (FSU wins 5-0)