Bulldogs Take A Pair Of Matches From Niagara And Wofford

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Senior Dani McCree notched a season-high 11 kills against Niagara Friday afternoon.
Photo Courtesy of Bill Simmonds

STARKVILLE, Miss. – Friday the 13th proved to be no problem for the Mississippi State volleyball team (5-4) as is picked up a sweep against Niagara (0-7) and a 3-1 win against Wofford (2-5) during the opening day of the Bulldog Invitational.

In the first match of the afternoon, Niagara jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first set but MSU claimed 22 of the next 27 points to take a commanding 25-13 victory. Freshman Chelsea Duhs led the way with six of her nine kills in the set.

The second set was no different as NU managed to keep to the match tied until it reached five all. State rattled off another run – this time 6-0 – to take an 11-5 advantage. The Purple Eagles struggled to keep up and eventually fell 25-17.

MSU could never put a run together in the third set but managed to hold momentum throughout for a 25-21 victory. Senior Dani McCree notched five of her season-high 11 kills in the set.

Freshman Kimmy Gardiner recorded yet another double-double with 13 kills and 12 digs. Roxanne McVey also chipped in 22 digs, while Suzanne Horner added 27 assists.

Kaitlyn Schoeppner, Kelsey Stommes and Katlyn Mataya all made their career debuts on the afternoon.

The Bulldogs’ pace fell off early in the second match of the day as Wofford stole the first set 25-23. MSU fell behind from the first point of the game and good never regain traction. The Terriers largest lead came at 6-3 and State managed to tie it at 16. Wofford pulled ahead for good soon thereafter.

Mississippi State reset the tone of the match in the second set. After back-to-back points from Wofford out a timeout to cut the Bulldogs’ lead to 14-13, MSU used a Duhs kill to ignite an 11-0 run and won the second set 25-13.

State thwarted a comeback attempt by the Terriers in the third set and wasted no time in the fifth with a dominating 25-8 victory.

Gardiner once again notched a double-double, her SEC-leading sixth-straight. Taylor Scott also recorded her fifth double-double of the season with 10 kills and 14 digs.

Duhs posted a career-high 16 kills, while Horner added 44 assists. McVey also tacked on 27 digs.

The Bulldogs return to action Saturday at 12:30 p.m. against Wofford followed by a 6:30 p.m. matchup with Niagara.

Admission to all volleyball matches is free. Schedule posters and cards will also be available at each of this weekend’s matches.

All matches in the Bulldog Invitational will also be available on HailStateTV free of charge and there is no need to register. Fans should simply visit www.HailState.com/hstvlive and click on the video link that appears at match time for each contest.

Fans can follow the Mississippi State volleyball program on Twitter @HailStateVB, Instagram @HailStateVB and Facebook at facebook.com/HailStateVB.


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