Eagles dig out eighth straight win

Katie Tolbert

Georgia Southern University’s volleyball team ended its four-match road swing with two victories against College of Charleston, winning 3-1, and The Citadel, winning 3-0.

The Eagles went into its first match against the Cougars having won the six previous matches it played. Winning the match against CofC made it the team’s seventh consecutive win with set scores of 16-25, 25-17, 25-15 and 25-20. Earlier this season CofC swept GSU, so this was a big win for Eagles, also making it first in the Southern Conference South Division.

The Eagles were very strong up at the net during offense and defense. Leading the team, senior outside hitter Moriah Bellissimo had 17 kills. Not far behind, senior outside hitter Meredith Paskert had 13 kills and three blocks ,and sophomore middle blocker Kym Coley had 11 kills and three blocks.

The Eagles defended well, posting 12 total team blocks, holding the Cougars to a .117 hitting percentage. Gaining momentum, the Eagles held the Cougars to a -.056 hitting percentage in set two and a .000 hitting percentage in set three.

The Eagles struggled in the first set of the match with multiple errors, but the Eagles gained back confidence and momentum and fought the Cougars to win the next three matches. In each of the following matches, the Eagles had comfortable leads of 12-5 in the second set, 19-11 in the third set and 19-13 in the fourth set to take the win.

Following this victory, the Eagles once again swept The Citadel with set scores of 25-13, 26-24 and 25-16. This was the Eagles eighth win in a row, but also its 20th win this season. This is the third time in head coach Chad Callihan’s career at GSU and the 10th time in GSU’s history that the Eagles have won 20-plus matches in one season.

Up at the net, Paskert posted 16 kills and junior outside hitter Nicole Jeschelnik posted 12 kills.

But, the Eagles really performed on the defensive side. The Eagles held the Bulldogs to a .094 hitting percentage, had six team blocks and 67 team digs. Freshman libaro Alexandra Beecher received a match high 21 digs, and Bellissimo added 16 digs as well as seven kills.

GSU returns home for its last four regular season matches starting with Western Carolina University on Saturday, Nov. 3at 7 p.m. and Davidson College on Monday, Nov. 5 at 6 p.m.