Nov. 2, 2007
AUBURN - Despite hitting .220 as a team, Auburn (11-15, 3-12 SEC) could not hold off Mississippi State (11-13, 6-9 SEC) as the Bulldogs rolled to a 3-0 win Friday at the Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum.
The Tigers return to action at 1:30 p.m., Sunday with a match at Alabama (14-10, 11-4 SEC). The Crimson Tide swept AU in their meeting earlier this season in Auburn.
Seniors Jelena Sekulic and Whitney Jacob led the team with 12 and 10 kills, respectively. Freshman Alyssa Davis chipped in a career-high nine kills while hitting .467 for the night.
"I thought we had to get another line up in tonight, we were just trying to get our most offensive players in," said head coach Laura Farina. "We really struggled in the serving game for two games, it took us a long time to get into the rhythm of game three and by that time it was too late."
Auburn, who averages nearly two aces per game, could muster only two aces in the match while committing eight service errors.
MSU picked up the win in three straight games, 30-26, 30-22, 30-28. The Bulldogs jumped out early, leading by as many as eight points before Auburn came back, cutting it to three. Mississippi State held on, though, for the 30-26 win.
The team's stayed neck-and-neck in the second game, but MSU pulled away late in the game to finish off the 30-22 win.
The Bulldogs again came out and took an early lead in game three, but Auburn bounced back to tie the game and eventually take the lead. The Tigers led as late as the 26-25 mark, but watched as MSU tied the game and took the lead on a Jamie Joyner kill, leading to the 30-28 win.
Defensively for Auburn it was junior libero Emily Knuth leading the way with 13 digs, followed by senior Rachel Shanks with 12. Jacob, Davis and Sekulic recorded two blocks each in the match.
The Tigers now turn their attention to in-state rival Alabama. The Crimson Tide is coming off a 3-0 loss on the road to Georgia.
"I feel like we still have a lot of improvement to make and the team is still working hard," said Farina. "They still have a lot of energy and there is still a lot of passion. The Alabama match is always an exciting one and we are going to be up and ready to play for it."