BATON ROUGE, La. – LSU split the weekend series against Mississippi State as they fell in five sets 24-26, 25-16, 25-16, 21-25, 14-16 Sunday afternoon at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
LSU (13-9, 7-5 SEC) has played in 10 five-set matches this season, including nine in SEC mathes where they hold a 6-3 record. Mississippi State (12-10, 5-7 SEC) snaps a five-match losing streak in the win despite being outhit .167-.150.
The Tigers logged 12 blocks to mark the second consecutive match and fourth in five matches that LSU has reached 10 or more blocks. The Tigers also registered a season-high 108 digs which is tied for No. 8 in the program’s record book for the most digs in a five-set match.
Outside hitter Sanaa Dotson recorded double-double No. 8 this season with a team-high 18 kills and registered 12 digs. Dotson also matched a career-high with three aces and added a pair of blocks. Middle blocker Anita Anwusi tied her season-best of 13 kills behind a .385 hitting percentage and had five blocks including one solo block.
Setter Josie Vondran led the team with 22 assists and finished with five digs, four blocks and four kills. Freshman setter Maddie Waak had her second consecutive double-double with 21 assists and a season-high 17 digs. Waak also had one ace.
Libero Ella Larkin notched her fourth match with 30 or more digs after a team-high 31 digs and finished with six assists. Defensive specialist Jill Bohnet followed with 21 digs and outside hitter Paige Flickinger set a new season-high with 18 digs to go along with seven kills and one solo block.
- Mississippi State led 5-2 behind a 4-0 run and was on top 10-5 when LSU called its first timeout of the match.
- LSU pulled within two points at 14-12 thanks to a 4-0 run of its own, but MSU increased its margin back to five at 17-12, forcing LSU to use its final timeout of the frame.
- After the Bulldogs grabbed its largest lead of the set at 20-13, the Tigers responded by scoring eight of the next 10 points to cut the deficit to 22-21.
- Mississippi State took a timeout to stop the bleeding, but LSU continued to roll and used an overall 11-2 run highlighted by five unanswered points, to take a 24-22 lead.
- The Bulldogs went on to fight off two match points and ended the set on a 4-0 run to win it 26-24.
- LSU took a 12-8 lead courtesy of a 4-0 run that made MSU use the first timeout in the stanza. The Tigers stretched its lead to as many as six points at 19-13 when the Bulldogs called their final timeout.
- The Tigers eventually returned the favor and closed the set with four unanswered points and took a 25-16 second set to even up the match.
- LSU hit .325 in the set with 17 kills, while holding Mississippi State to a .086 hitting percentage with only 10 kills. Anwusi dominated the frame with six kills (.625) and contributed one block.
- Another early 12-7 advantage for the Tigers forced a Bulldog timeout. MSU burned its final timeout after LSU took a 21-14 lead late in the set.
- Following the timeout, Mississippi State landed a kill, but the Tigers scored four of the next five points, including an ace from Dotson to seal a 25-16 win and 2-1 match lead.
- In addition to her two aces in the set, Dotson led the Tigers with four kills.
- An LSU 4-1 scoring run led to a 12-8 edge when MSU signaled for a timeout. The Bulldogs battled back however and took an 18-17 lead to force an LSU timeout.
- The Tigers regained the lead quickly with three consecutive points following the break in action, but MSU answered with its own 3-0 run to take the 21-20 advantage, pressuring LSU into its final timeout.
- The Bulldogs run continued on the other side of the break as an overall 6-1 run gave the visiting team a 25-21 win to force a fifth set.
- The teams switched sides with LSU on top 8-7 with six ties and three lead changes by the media timeout.
- Following the pause, MSU scored the next three points to take a 10-9 lead and LSU called a timeout.
- The Tigers was gifted with a Bulldog service error for a 10-10 tie, but the visitors found the floor on a pair of kills to go ahead 12-10 and LSU took its final timeout.
- LSU scored three of the next five points to pull within one point at 14-13 and MSU called for time. An attacking error from the Bulldogs tied the score at 14 but the visiting team turned in consecutive kills to win the set 16-14.
LSU will play away from home for four consecutive matches beginning with a two-match series at Tennessee Nov. 5-6.
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