Beach Finishes Runner up at CCSA Championship

by Grant Kauvar
Beach Finishes Runner up at CCSA Championship

EMERSON, Ga.- After an emphatic, 4-1, win over South Carolina in the CCSA Tournament Semi-Finals, the LSU beach volleyball team fell to Florida State in the championship at the LakePoint Sporting Community Center, Sunday.

“We aren’t ever going to be satisfied with a loss, but it’s clear that we made a step in the right direction today,” said Coach Russell Brock.

The Tigers made quick work of the Gamecocks in the semi-finals, winning in straight sets on four courts. Claire Coppola and Kristen Nuss continued their impressive season on Court 1, picking up their 30th victory of the year, 21-14 and 21-9.

Olivia Powers and Hunter Domanski won two hard-fought sets, 21-18 and 21-17, to give the Tigers a 2-0 advantage. LSU suffered it’s only defeat on Court 2 when Haleigh Nelson and Mandi Orellana fell, 21-17 and 21-18.

Emmy Allen and Megan Davenport took Court 4, clinching a date with Florid State in the championship with set wins of 21-14 and 21-18. Maddie Ligon and Riley Young put the cherry on top, winning 21-16 in both sets, to defeat South Carolina, 4-1 in the CCSA Semi-Finals. 

“Our semi-final match was a great match,” said Brock. “We needed to make a statement about who we are and where we stand in the East. To dominate that match under that pressure was very important. I’m really proud of the way we played.”

LSU and Florida State squared up in the CCSA Championship and it was a tight dual which saw four courts go to three sets.

“The final was an absolute battle,” said Brock. “That test showed how much we’ve progressed, but also revealed some flaws that we have time to address. That’s the best thing about being pushed to the limit. It shows where you really are.”

Nelson and Orellana fell in Court 2 in two sets, 21-18 and 21-19.

On Court 3, Powers and Domanski dominated in set one, 21-11, but dropped the second set, 21-15. In set three the LSU duo was defeated, 15-9. Young and Ligon bounced back in the second set, 21-19, after being defeated, 21-17, in the first set. Florida State clinched the championship with a 15-12 set three win on Court 5 against Young and Ligon.

Courts 1 and 4 went unfinished in the third set after Florida State clinched. Coppola and Nuss took set one, 21-12, and dropped the second set, 21-18. Copolla and Nuss were leading 14-13. Allen and Davenport fell in set one, 21-12, before taking set two, 21-19. The LSU duo led 12-11 in the third set.

Next Sunday, April 29th the NCAA will announce the eight teams selected for the NCAA Championships May 4-6 in Gulf Shores, Alabama. The top-three teams in the East and the top-three teams in the west will receive a bid plus there will be two at-large bids.

“We know that with the effort and results from the weekend and the resume we’ve built through the season, that we’ve put ourselves in the position that we’ve been working for heading towards the NCAA Championship Tournament,” said Brock. “As the second best team in the East and several strong wins vs West Coast teams, we are excited to see where we will end up in the seeding process.”

CCSA Semi-Finals

LSU def. South Carolina, 4-1

  1. Claire Coppola/Kristen Nuss (LSU) def. Cadie Bates/Katie Smith (SC) 21-14, 21-9
  2. Shannon Williams/Ali Denney (SC) def. Haleigh Nelson/Mandi Orellana (LSU) 21-17, 21-18
  3. Olivia Powers/Hunter Domanski (LSU) def. Carly Schnieder/Julia Mannisto (SC) 21-18, 21-17
  4. Emmy Allen/Megan Davenport (LSU) def. Leah Perri/Macie Tendrich (SC) 21-14, 21-18
  5. Riley Young/Maddie Ligon (LSU) def. Caroline Skaff/Jess Vastine (SC) 21-16, 21-16

CCSA Championship

Florida State def. LSU, 3-0

  1. Tory Paranagua/Vanessa Freire (FS) def. Claire Coppola/Kristen Nuss (LSU) 12-21, 21-18, 14-13
  2. Katie Horton/Hailey Luke (FS) def. Haleigh Nelson/Mandi Orellana (LSU) 21-18, 21-19
  3. Macy Jerger/Sara Putt (FS) def. Olivia Powers/Hunter Domanski (LSU) 11-21, 21-15, 15-9
  4. Brooke Kuhlman/Molly McBain (FS) def. Emmy Allen/Megan Davenport (LSU) 21-12, 19-21, 12-11
  5. Francesca Goncalves/Eva Torruella (FS) def. Riley Young/Maddie Ligon (LSU) 21-17, 19-21, 15-12