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Volleyball: Smooth Sailing on Offense Steers Louisiana to Sweep of Little Rock

Perfect mark vs. Sun Belt West foes remains intact for the Ragin’ Cajuns

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A low-error performance allowed Louisiana Volleyball to never lose sight of Little Rock and positioned the squad for a 3-0 (25-22, 25-23, 25-19) win over the Trojans on Saturday night at the Jack Stephens Center.
 
The Ragin' Cajuns (13-8, 8-5 Sun Belt) committed only three errors over the first two sets and nine total over 117 swings in the match. The result was either maintaining separation from the Trojans (14-11, 5-8 Sun Belt) or quickly erasing any leads the hosts would obtain throughout the night.
 
In what turned out to be a showcase of offense on both ends, with Louisiana hitting .291 and Little Rock hitting .231, it was minimizing the miscues that was vital. While the Ragin' Cajuns were low-error in the first two sets, the Trojans committed 10 as the visitors opened a commanding 2-0 match lead.
 
Kelsey Bennett and Coco Gillett steered the offense for Louisiana, combining for 31 of the team's 43 kills in a win that keeps the Ragin' Cajuns undefeated (7-0) against Sun Belt West Division foes.
 
With the win the Ragin' Cajuns further strengthened their hold on second place in the SBC West – key to a first round bye in the SBC Tournament – and remain in contention for the division title.
 
The Bennett-Gillett combination provided dividends early on as the duo generated 12 kills in the opening set. Gillett's first two kills highlighted a 4-0 run that put Louisiana ahead for good at 8-5 while Bennett's final two of the stanza netted side outs for leads of 19-17 and 20-18.
 
Little Rock drew even at 21-all, then Gillett seized control for the Ragin' Cajuns with a tie-breaking kill. She was involved in a block on the next rally and immediately scored another kill that stretched the advantage to 24-21.
 
The Ragin' Cajuns fired off 16 kills without error on 33 swings in the second set and survived a late lead change to remain on course for the sweep.
 
A kill from Gillett and a Siena DeCambra ace gave Louisiana a 21-19 lead moments after recovering from a 5-0 Little Rock that put the hosts ahead 18-16. The Trojans rebounded and leapt back in front at 23-22, then a timely timeout called by the Ragin' Cajuns led to a service error and a Bennett kill followed by a Chinelo Ogogor block resulted in set point.
 
Louisiana's sweep was capped off by the longest scoring run of the night, a 7-1 sprint to the finish line following an 18-all tie in Set 3.
 
The finishing touches were spearheaded by Cami Hicks who scored a pair of timely kills. The first snapped the tie and it was followed by a Gillett ace for a 20-18 advantage. Little Rock collected a side out, but with the second kill Hicks preserved the lead and jumpstarted a five-point run to end the night.  
 
Louisiana swept the season series from Little Rock for the third straight season (2019-21) and extended its win streak over the Trojans in SBC matches to seven straight.
 
LEADING THE RAGIN' CAJUNS
Gillett finished with 17 kills off 35 swings and had only two miscues. Her .429 hitting percentage marked her highest with double-digit kills in a Sun Belt match.
 
With 10 digs added to her stat line, Gillett notched a double-double for the second straight outing and sixth time this season.  
 
For the 19th time in 21 outings Bennett recorded double figures in kills as she posted 14 kills.
 
Hicks led the way with a match-high four blocks while Ogogor with three blocks was the other Ragin' Cajun to have a hand in multiple stops.
 
DeCambra passed out 32 assists in leading Louisiana to its highest hitting percentage in SBC play. She added seven digs and a team-best two service aces.
 
Jordan Valley rounded up 16 digs for her fifth consecutive outing reaching double digits.
 
UP NEXT
Louisiana spends the remainder of the regular season inside the friendly confines of Earl K. Long Gym.
 
The Ragin' Cajuns are scheduled for a three-match homestand to close the regular season, starting on Saturday, Nov. 6 with a 2 p.m. match vs. ULM (5-23, 1-12 Sun Belt). The following weekend (Nov. 12-13) UT Arlington and Texas State visit. All three matches are set to air on ESPN�.
 
Louisiana will be celebrating Alumni Weekend during the ULM match highlighted by a tribute to Sawyer Camillo.
 
FOLLOW THE RAGIN' CAJUNS
Follow the Ragin' Cajuns on Twitter (@RaginCajunsVB), Facebook (/RaginCajunsVB) or Instagram (@RaginCajunsVB) to stay up-to-date on all that is happening with Louisiana Volleyball.
 

- www.RaginCajuns.com -



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