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Volleyball: Cajuns Complete Sweep of Sun Belt-Opening Weekend
ATLANTA – The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Volleyball team completed a sweep of Sun Belt-opening weekend action by claiming a straight sets (25-21, 25-21, 25-21) victory over Georgia State at the GSU Sports Arena.
Louisiana (8-7, 2-0 Sun Belt) hit above .200 in each set and averaged at least 14 kills per set for the third straight match. The Ragin' Cajuns were able to close out Georgia State (7-8, 1-1 Sun Belt) by commanding the final stages of each set.
The 2-0 start to Sun Belt play is the first for Louisiana since the 2010 season.
LEADING THE RAGIN' CAJUNS
Stacey Reilly topped the Cajuns offense with 11 kills on a .250 hitting percentage. Nia Antoine (8 kills), Hali Wisnoskie (8 kills) and Dree'Ana Abram (6 kills) helped her shoulder the load.
Graduate setter Jessica Bartczyszyn handed out 36 assists and chipped in three kills and six digs. She averaged 12 assists per set in both matches on the Georgia trip.
Abram led the front row with four blocks (2 BS, 2 BA) while it was a group effort on the back row with Sydney Davis, Lexi Hebert and Reilly each scooping eight digs.
Louisiana returns to Earl K. Long Gym for the first time in four weeks and hosts the Sun Belt's Arkansas schools Friday-Saturday, Sept. 29-30. The Ragin' Cajuns face Arkansas State in the Sun Belt home opener on Friday, then battle Little Rock on Saturday. Both matches are set to begin at 6:30 p.m.
There will be a block party on the gym's lawn on Friday prior to the ASU match headlined by a free concert performed by Geno Delafose and French Rocking Boogie from 4:30-6:00 p.m.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Louisiana, which had led in the opening set since a GSU service error provided a 6-5 edge, trailed 20-19 after a service ace by Savian Jordan. After a Panthers attack error knotted the score, the Ragin' Cajuns capitalized by getting kills from Hanna Rovira and Abram followed by a block from Abram to open a 23-20 lead.
- The Ragin' Cajuns dug out of a 7-3 deficit in the second set with five unanswered points capped off by kills from Abram and Bartczysyzn. Back-and-forth play continued through 15-all before Louisiana posted a second string of five unanswered to forge ahead 20-15.
GSU pulled within three points twice down the stretch. Louisiana answered with kills each time, the latter off the hands of Reilly for a 24-20 advantage.
- The third set followed a similar script to the first pair. There were eight ties, the last at 17-17, before the Ragin' Cajuns snapped the stalemate with a Reilly kill and Breaux served up three more points.
The Panthers closed within a point, 22-21, with a kill from Jha'Meisheia Griffin. Once again the Ragin' Cajuns finished strong, with Reilly getting a sideout on a kill then Wisnoskie combining for a block and landing match point with a kill.
- The Ragin' Cajuns picked up their first-ever win at the GSU Sports Arena and extended their series win streak over the Panthers to three matches (now lead all-time series 5-3).
- Stacey Reilly's 11 kills marked her team-leading 11th match with double digits and the 39th overall in her career. Reilly's career kills tally increased to 889 moving her within 11 of the 900-plateau.
- Nia Antoine's eight kills increased her weekend total to 26 (3.71 per set). The junior middle blocker finished the trip to Georgia with a .422 hitting percentage.
- Louisiana's .243 team hitting percentage marked the fourth time in the past two weekends (five matches total) that the team hit above .200. The Ragin' Cajuns hit .256 on this weekend's Georgia road trip.
- Louisiana won on the opposition's home court for the third straight time. The current streak began with a four-set win at Chicago State last Friday.
- Head coach Heather Mazeitis-Fontenot picked up her 127th win as Ragin' Cajuns head coach. She's now nine (9) wins shy of tying Wilo Colon's program-record 136 victories.
FOLLOW THE RAGIN' CAJUNS
For more information on Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Volleyball, as well as all of Ragin' Cajuns Athletics, visit RaginCajuns.com. Fans can also follow along with the team on Facebook (/ULVolleyball), Twitter (@RaginCajunsVB) and Instagram (@RaginCajunsVB).
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