TSU won the first set but couldn’t keep the momentum as Grambling State won three straight sets to secure a 3-1 volleyball win Monday night.
TSU would battle back from a 10-6 deficit as they scored four of the next five points. Grambling State jumped back out to a 16-11 lead but a team effort led to four straight TSU points and a 16-15 deficit. Grambling State once again countered with six of the next seven points scored for a 22-16 advantage. However, TSU refused to give up as Thalia Cordero Moreno and Danielle Lilley had two kills each to key a 7-0 run and a 23-22 TSU lead as a result. Both teams would trade points down the stretch until a Lilley kill and GSU attack error sent set one in TSU’s favor 28-26.
TSU fell behind 9-1 in set two and got within five at 12-7. Grambling State refused to let the lead go as they went on to close out set two 25-16.
Set three saw a 6-6 tie turn into a 12-7 GSU lead but TSU stayed close until a 5-1 GSU run turned a 14-10 lead into a 19-11 lead. TSU would get within 23-17 after a Erianna Murray kill and Kat Betancourt ace but GSU responded with a kill and took advantage of a TSU set error to claim set three 25-17.
TSU led 13-11 in set four but Grambling State reeled off six straight to claim a 17-13 lead. TSU fought back and took a 19-18 lead after inspired play but GSU regained the momentum with consecutive kills to lead 20-19. TSU regrouped and took a 24-23 lead after Chenise Cook’s kill and was set to force a fifth set but GSU scored twice to lead 25-24. A GSU attack error gave new life to TSU at 25-all but GSU countered with back-to-back kills for a 27-25 win.
Lilley led TSU with 12 kills followed by 10 from Betancourt. Dallas Balanay-Flores led all setters with 19 assists while Aeris Ramsey recorded 18. Kaitlyn Scroggins finished with 25 digs along with double digit digs from Lilley and Ramsey. Lilley also had three block assists.
TSU now turns its sights to the 2021 SWAC Tournament on Friday at Alabama A&M in Huntsville, Ala. TSU is seeded eighth and will face #1 Jackson State at 11 a.m.