Nov. 30, 2004
THIBODAUX, La. - For the second straight match Buchi Okoh set a career-high in kills and Molli Abel eclipsed the 20-kill plateau, but the Lamar volleyball team came up just short of a victory on Tuesday night, falling to Nicholls State in a five-game Southland Conference match at Stopher Gymnasium by scores of 30-26, 27-30, 30-26, 25-30 and 12-15.
With the loss, the Lady Cardinals fall to 9-22 on the season with a 2-17 league mark. Nicholls State improves to 10-14 overall and 10-8 in SLC action.
Lamar trailed for much of the first game before erasing a 25-19 deficit with an 11-1 run. Abel, a freshman from Friendswood, recorded three of her 20 kills during the run, helping lift the Lady Cardinals to a 1-0 lead in the match.
The second game was equally close, with no team leading by more than six points, but NSU was able to bounce back from the first-game loss to tie the match at 1-1 with a 30-27 victory.
The Lady Cards responded with their best offensive game of the match in the third frame, recording a .317 team hitting percentage. After a kill by Abel, Lamar broke a 1-1 tie and never trailed again, cruising to a 30-26 win.
The fourth and fifth games were extremely close, featuring 13 ties and 10 lead changes. Both teams were evenly matched, but NSU finished with a strong offensive effort to pull out the win. The Lady Colonels tallied a match-high .474 hitting percentage in the final frame and recorded a .296 attacking mark for the match.
Okoh, a sophomore from Houston, tallied a match-high 27 kills and a team-high .412 hitting percentage for the match. She added four blocks and one dig. Abel had her second consecutive double-double and fifth of the season with 20 kills and 15 digs. She rounded out her balanced performance with five blocks, two assists and two aces.
LU junior Alisa Jackson led all performers with four service aces for the second consecutive match, while adding nine kills. Senior Ashley Hallagin recorded her second straight double-double and fifth of the season with 58 assists and 10 digs. Her numbers were identical to Saturday night's performance in the Lady Cards five-game loss to Northwestern State.
Atina Porter led Nicholls with 27 kills and a .478 hitting percentage, while Joana Garboggini added a double-double with match-highs of 60 assists and 16 digs.
The Lady Cardinals will conclude the 2004 season on Saturday, Nov. 13 with a 7 p.m. SLC match against Stephen F. Austin in Nacogdoches.