Racers Top Saint Louis, Fall to UMKC in Final Non-Conference MatchesThe Murray State volleyball team was back in action, Saturday, at the Billiken Invitational, where they took down host Saint Louis in four sets before falling to Missouri-Kansas City.
After splitting their matches, the Racers remain .500 on the season at 6-6. Saint Louis falls to 1-11 while UMKC improves to 9-5.
Senior Dacia Brown was named to the all-tournament team after racking up 40 kills while hitting .245 in three matches.
Against Saint Louis, junior Rachel Giustino led the team with 19 kills while Brown added 15 of her own. Sophomore Callie Anderton tallied 40 assists and nine digs while junior Alex Kaufmann and sophomore Becca Fernandez each had 11 digs.
As a team, the Racers matched a season-high with eight service aces.
In the first set, Brown got the Racers on the board with a kill to jumpstart a 7-2 run to begin the match. The Racer built a lead as large as eight, but the Billikens were able to get back within three at 19-16. However, MSU won three straight points after that on two kills by Giustino and one by redshirt-freshman Kolby McClelland to take control of a set they eventually took 25-20.
Saint Louis used a quick start in the second set to take a 4-1 lead and gradually built their lead to six at 11-5. The Racers went on a 3-0 run late in the set when SLU had set point, but it was a little too late as the Billikens were able to hold on for a 25-23 victory.
After a couple of mini runs by both teams to begin the third set, the Racers took control with the score tied at six, going on a 10-3 run, culminating with an ace by Giustino. Saint Louis could not get back into the set as the Racers eventually took the set, 25-18 on a kill by Giustino.
The fourth set started similar to the third as the score was tied at seven early before Murray State started to break away. Freshman Emily Matson had two service aces on a 5-0 run as the Racers took a 12-7 lead. Saint Louis got back to within one at 14-13, but the Racers responded with an 11-3 to take the set and the match, ending the match on a block by Giustino and sophomore Katirah Johnson.
In their second match of the day, the Racers fell to the Kangaroos of UMKC in three sets.
Brown led the team with 14 kills while Anderton had 15 assists. Fernandez and McClelland led the Racers on defense with 12 digs and three blocks, respectively.
UMKC used fast starts in each of the first two sets as they took both sets, 25-21 and 25-11, to take a 2-0 lead. Murray State had their best chance in the third set as they stayed close most of the way, but with the score tied at 20, the Kangaroos went on a 5-0 run to take the set and the match.
The Racers are back in action, Friday at 6 p.m. when they travel to UT Martin to begin OVC play.