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Ole Miss Volleyball Falls In Five Set Battle at Georgia

ATHENS, Ga. — In the first of a two-match series at Georgia, Ole Miss forced the Bulldogs to five sets before falling 3-2 Wednesday night.

For the fourth match this season, Ole Miss totaled ten plus blocks as a team, with a total of 14.0. Two Rebels finished with double-digit kills as GG Carvacho recorded 13, while Lauren Thompson added ten kills and 11 digs for her second double-double of the year.

Carvacho recorded the Rebels first point of the match off a kill to the right side, while Sasha Ratliff followed shortly with a hard hit to the back row to tie up the set at two. Samantha Schnitta added her 28th service ace of the season to take the first Rebel lead. A 4-1 run extended this lead to 7-3 early on. Ole Miss took its largest lead of the set at 11-5. Georgia began to battle back to even the set at 13 all. The two teams continued to go back and forth with five total ties. Easton’s first kill of the match put the Rebels up by three at 18-15. Ole Miss held control the remainder of the set before closing it out with a 3-0 run to take set one 25-18.

Set two began with the two teams trading points back and forth, before Georgia took off on a 4-0 scoring run to lead 6-3. Ole Miss worked its way back capitalizing off of UGA errors, yet struggled to keep pace with the Bulldogs. Schnitta added her first kill of the match, yet the Rebels still trailed 15-8. It was all Georgia the remainder of the set, with the Bulldogs eventually winning 25-17.

An early 3-0 Rebel run to start set three allowed them to hold a 4-2 lead as Carvacho added her sixth kill of the night. Ole Miss took a two-point lead at 7-5, before Georgia took off on a 6-0 run of their own to take the lead 11-7. A duo block from Schnitta and Aubrey Sultemeier pulled the Rebels within three at 12-9. Ratliff recorded her fourth kill to bring the set within two, trailing 14-12. Block five for Ratliff made it a one-point set at 15-14. A Schnitta kill tied things up again at 18, as the set continued to go back and forth. A 6-1 Bulldog run allowed them to run off with the third set 25-20.

Ratliff and Easton teamed up for a block to tie up the fourth set early at two all. A quick 5-0 Rebel run highlighted by two Thompson kills allowed Ole Miss to take an 8-4 lead. The Rebels held steady with multiple leads of two points, before back-to-back Ole Miss kills extended the lead at 17-13. Georgia came within one, as the Rebels led 21-20. Three straight Rebel points brought them to set point at 24-20, before Georgia stopped two straight to trail 24-22. A Sultemeier tip kill gave Ole Miss the set victory to force a fifth set at 25-22.

The tie trend continued into the fifth set with multiple early ties. Georgia broke it open, taking a two-point lead at 6-4 and again at 8-6. Thompson’s ninth kill cut the deficit to one at 9-8, yet the Rebels were unable to overcome nine Georgia kills as the Bulldogs  took the set 15-11 and the match 3-2.

Ole Miss returns to Stegeman Coliseum to face Georgia tomorrow night at 5 p.m. CT. The match will air on SEC Network +.

Follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissVB,Facebook at Ole Miss Volleyball, and on Instagram at @olemissvb. You can also follow head coach Kayla Banwarth on Twitter @KaylaBanwarth2.