Volleyball Wins SEC Match Against Georgia in Four Sets
BATON ROUGE – The LSU volleyball team picked up its first SEC victory of the season on Wednesday evening, defeating Georgia in four sets by scores of 25-22, 25-20, 22-25, 25-18. The Tigers are now 6-11 on the year and 1-5 in the SEC. Georgia falls to 12-6 on the season and 3-4 in the league.
Taylor Bannister picked up her first career double-double with a match-high 19 kills and a career-high 15 digs. Anna Zwiebel recorded her third-straight double-double with 40 assists and 11 digs. Raigen Cianciulli anchored the back row with a match-high 28 digs, while Milan Stokes chipped in 12 kills.
- The Tigers continue their home stand with a match against Auburn on Sunday at 1 p.m. inside the Pete Maravich Assembly Center. The match will stream live on SEC Network+ with Lyn Rollins and Garrett Walvoord on the call.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- After trailing Georgia to start the match, the Tigers went on a 5-0 run to take a 8-5 lead and force the Bulldogs to a timeout.
- Georgia worked their way back and tied the set up at 9-9. The set was tied up two more times before the Tigers took the lead for good on a kill by Milan Stokes.
- LSU scored back-to-back points on kills by Stokes and Olivia Beyer to take a 24-21 lead. A sneaky kill by Zwiebel sealed the first set for the Tigers, 25-22.
- The Tigers hit .240 with Taylor Bannister, Beyer and Stokes each leading with four kills. Cianciulli picked up eight digs.
- LSU started the second match with a 4-2 lead. Georgia tied the set up, but the Tigers pushed to an 8-6 lead on a kill by Zwiebel.
- Georgia took an 11-10 lead on the Tigers, but LSU put together a 4-0 run to take a 14-11 lead. The Tigers pushed to a 17-14 lead after a Stokes kill.
- The Tigers took their largest lead at 23-16 after a kill by Bannister. Two kills by Jacqui Armer sealed the second set for the Tigers, 25-20.
- LSU hit .200 hit the second set, getting five kills from Bannister and three from Armer.
- The Tigers started off strong with a 3-1 lead. LSU pushed to a 8-5 lead after three-straight points, including two attacking errors by the Bulldogs. Georgia worked its way back to tie the set up 9-9 and took the lead 13-10.
- Georgia pulled ahead 16-12 and the Tigers took a timeout. Out of the timeout, the Tigers score three straight points to come within one, 16-15, and force the Bulldogs to a timeout.
- The two teams went point-for-point, but the Bulldogs pushed to a 23-20 lead, forcing the Tigers to use its second timeout of the set. The Bulldogs took the third set by a score of 25-22.
- Bannister led the Tigers in the third set with five kills. The Tigers hit .140 as a team and Cianciulli picked up 10 digs.
- LSU started out strong again with a 7-3 lead after a Katie Kampen ace, but Georgia worked its way to come within one, 7-6.
- The Tigers pushed to a 14-8 lead on the Bulldogs and a 16-10 lead. Georgia used three straight points to come within three, 16-13, and force the Tigers to a timeout.
- A Sydney Mukes kill put the Tigers up 18-14 and back-to-back points gave the Tigers a 20-15 lead.
- LSU put together three-straight points to take a 23-16 and the Tigers closed the match with a kill from Bannister and a match-point kill from Milan Stokes, claiming the final set, 25-18.
- The Tigers hit .484 in the final set with 16 kills on 31 attacks and just one error. Bannister finished the set with five kills, while Cianciulli picked up seven digs.
– Bannister led the Tigers with 19 kills making it her 16th match in double digits this season. Her double-double of 19 kills and 15 digs is her first double-double of her career. The 15 digs is a career-high for the Tiger and her first match in double-digit digs.
– Stokes’ finished with 12 kills making it her fourth match in double digits this season.
– Zwiebel’s double-double of 40 assists and 11 digs was her fourth double-double of this season, third-straight and her 21st in her career. It’s her fifth-straight match in double-digit assists.
– Cianciulli’s 28 digs tied ninth in program history for digs in a four-set match. This is her seventh 20-plus digs match of the season and her third-best career dig number.
– Four players finished with double digit digs. (Cianciulli 28, Bannister 15, Maher 14, Zwiebel 11)
– The Tigers out-blocked the Bulldogs 7.0-5.0.
FRAN’S FINAL THOUGHTS
On getting the first SEC win…
“We’re excited you know. But it’s just one step and we understand that. I think that the thing we that found tonight was a different rhythm and a different personality which is something that we have been searching for. I think we found it, I think we found our identity that we can trust and have confidence in so I’m so happy for us and I’m so happy for our team. I’m happy for our team, number one because they’ve outscored other teams and not won the match. So tonight, we actually did that and won the match in a dominant fashion so I’m super happy for them.”
On ways to build off that match…
“I think that line-up that we have is working. I think Anna (Zwiebel) is doing a great job running the offense. I think she is smooth and she creates and the tempo that she is running is successful against most teams but we also know that we have a lot of depth so we will build on it but this is not the end-all, be-all. It is the line-up for now and we are comfortable in it. With (Milan) Stokes and (Sydney) Mukes playing the way they are playing and managing the game well, I think it gives us a nice opportunity.”
On the impact of the crowd…
“It was great. Anytime you give away Cane’s Chicken Fingers, the students are going to come for food. So we appreciate that support from Cane’s and the students. You know, a late night makes it tough for families to stay but at the end with the last couple points the crowd was important and they did a great job. We always appreciate our fans and now that we’re winning we hope that they will come out and see us some more”