Morehead, Ky.- Georgia State split a pair of matches Friday in the Eagle Challenge. The Panthers beat Providence 3-1 before falling to host Morehead State 0-3 in the evening.
GSU triumphed against Providence in the first of the doubleheader (25-23, 26-24, 23-25, 25-23). Senior Sydney Stroud, who did not play during last weekend’s GSU Invitational, led the offensive charge for the Panthers. She matched a career high 20 kill performance during the four set battle.
Providence jumped to a 5-11 lead in the first. A crucial kill by Morgan Hash moved the momentum in Georgia State’s favor. The Panthers offense continued to find holes in Friars’ territory to take the lead. The set was secured by two consecutive kills by Hash.
Both teams made several execution errors early in the second, but Georgia State found a rhythm after another kill by Hash. The Panthers went on a 4-0 run. Providence chipped away at the lead to knot the game at 24-24. A kill by Griffin and a Providence error gave the Panthers the frame.
During the third frame the momentum shifted to Providence. The Panthers overcame a four point deficit early to tie the game at 15, but the Friars continued to move around the Georgia State defense and pulled away with the set.
Georgia State put away the match in the fourth set. Once again, the Panthers found themselves in a hole early, but a 4-0 run distanced themselves from Providence. A kill by Sydney Stroud finished the game.
In the second half of Friday’s action, Georgia State fell to host Morehead State in straight sets. In the first frame the Panthers hung with Morehead State tying the game at 6-6, but Morehead State found an offensive rhythm. They took the set 25-14.
In the last two frames the Morehead State offense continued to find holes in the Georgia State defense and maneuvered the blocking scheme. They took the second set 19-25 before running away in the third frame 8-25. Morehead State finished the game with a .309 hitting percentage.
The Panthers look to close out the tournament with a strong performance against Presbyterian tomorrow. The match is slated for 2 p.m.
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