CONWAY, S.C. – Coastal Carolina volleyball trailed just once and used 10 service aces to clinch the Sun Belt East Division with a 3-0 straight-set win (25-18, 25-14, and 25-19) over the Georgia Southern Eagles on Thursday night inside The HTC Center.
The Chanticleers clinched their second-straight Sun Belt East Division title and extended the best start in program history to 12-0 on the season.
Junior Anett Nemeth led the way for the Chants offensively, as she posted a stellar .519 hitting percentage en route to her match-high 15 kills. She completed the double-double with 14 kills and led the home team with five service aces in the conference win.
Five other Chants totaled multiple kills for the match, while the setter duo of Marija Borcic and Brigitta Petrenko finished with 16 and 13 set assists apiece, respectively. Petrenko also added four service aces.
Defensively, the Chants held the Eagles to a .047 hitting percentage, forcing 22 errors compared to 27 kills, and totaled nine blocks on the night led by three from Nemeth and two each from Lauren Malone, Madison Lowery, and Christina Nance.
Libero Lina Perugini finished the match with a team-high 16 digs.
For the Eagles, Mya Wilson and Chamblee Russell led the way with 11 and eight kills apiece, while setter Madison Brown finished with 23 set assists.
Coastal stormed out of the introductions with a 6-0 run to start the match, which was highlighted by three-straight service aces from Petrenko, and then took a 9-1 lead on a GS attack error.
After the Eagles battled back to tie the set up at 12-12 and again at 13-13, the Chants got a kill from Ani Bozdeva, another ace from Petrenko, and a block at the net by Nance to retake the lead at 16-13 and force a GS timeout.
The Chants refused to relinquish the lead and took advantage of three-straight Eagle errors to close out the opening set with a 25-18 win.
The second set started out much like the first, as Coastal scored first and often to take a 9-3 lead on three-straight Nemeth aces.
The home team never looked back, as CCU hit .250 for the set, and led by as much as nine at 18-9 on another GS attack error.
Coastal closed the second set out on a 7-5 run and picked up the 25-14 second set win on a kill by Malone.
Up 2-0 in the match, the Chants saw Georgia Southern take its first and only lead in the match at 1-0 to start the third set on a kill by Wilson.
The lead didn’t last for long, as back-to-back kills from Nemeth and Lowery quickly gave the lead to the home team who ran off seven of the next nine points to take a 7-3 lead on a Jelena Prolic spike.
Following a Georgia Southern timeout, the Eagles got to as close as three at 7-5 on back-to-back kills from Russell and Brown, only to see the Chants answer with a 4-0 run aided by three Eagle errors to pull back out in front by six at 11-5.
CCU held off the Eagles, who got to within four twice at 18-14 and 19-15, yet used a kill and ace from Nemeth, a block from Ilse Sinnige and Borcic, and kills from both Prolic and Malone to seal the third set win at 25-19.
The Chanticleers (12-0, 12-0 SBC) and Georgia Southern (2-7, 2-7 Sun Belt) will wrap up the three-match conference series on Friday with not one, but two matches on the day. The first match is set for 11:30 a.m. ET. The second match of the day will begin at 6:30 p.m. ET.