Igodan and Holland lead TCU to Victory
Sept. 15, 2013
FORT WORTH, Texas - Under the leadership of season-high kills from Yvonne Igodan and Stephanie Holland, the TCU volleyball team won a 3-2 (25-22, 15-25, 20-15, 25-16, 15-9) thriller over Ole Miss Saturday night to claim the title at the TCU/Nike Molten Invitational.
The Horned Frogs (8-3, 0-0 Big 12) were down 2-1 in the match and fought back to take the fourth against the Rebels (7-3, 0-0 SEC), before dominating the fifth set to win the team's fifth match in a row in front of 1,508 fans in the University Recreation Center.
The match started out as a battle back and forth between the teams, until TCU started to capitalize off of the Rebels' errors to take a 14-10 lead. Two straight blocks from Mattie Burleson and Ashley Smith, along with a Smith killed put the Frogs' lead at seven. Ole Miss slowly chipped away at the lead and held off three match points attempts by TCU, but a block by Smith sealed the first set victory at 25-22.
TCU began set two with a 5-2 lead, but a kill from Melanie Crow combined with two strong serving run from Kristen Brashear and Evan St. Laurent put the Rebels on a 8-1 run. Ole Miss continued to build on their lead with a strong offensive attack, as the Rebels hit a match-high .478 in the set and held the Frogs to only nine kills in the set.
Out of the break, Ole Miss continued where they left off in set two as they took a 7-3 advantage to start the set. TCU would slowly climb back into the set, as Yvonne Igodan emerged as an offensive threat by putting down six kills and no errors for a .857 hitting percentage in the set. Trailing 22-18, Igodan slammed down two straight kills and Shane Peters served up an ace to pull the set closer, but a Marie-Pierre Bakima kill ended the comeback as Ole Miss would win set four 25-20 and take a 2-1 lead in the match.
Never backing down, Igodan and Holland came out swinging in the fourth set as the duo together recorded five kills to propel TCU to a 6-1 lead. Out of an Ole Miss time out, the Frogs continued their offensive attack and extended their lead to seven before the Rebels stormed back to close the gap to four. Ole Miss had no answer though for Igodan or Holland in the fourth set as they recorded 15 of the Frogs' 20 kills in the set. Leading 21-16, Holland would record a kill and Igodan would record two of her own and a solo block to close out the fourth set 25-16 and send the match into a deciding fifth set.
Although the Frogs dropped the first two points of the fifth set, kills from Igodan and Smith, along with two straight blocks from Burleson and Holland gave TCU the lead, as the team never looked back on its way to taking the fifth set 15-9 and the match.
To go along with Igodan's 20 kills and .704 hitting percentage, Holland finished with a season-high 14 kills and .433 hitting percentage, while Smith notched 12 kills. Alexia Heist recorded her second double-double of the tournament with a career-high 32 assists and 12 digs.
Igodan and Holland were named Co-MVPs of the invitational, while Smith was also named to the All-Tournament team. Igodan finished the invitational with 47 kills, 3.36 kills per set and a .592 hitting percentage to go along with 12 blocks. Holland recorded 34 kills, .382 hitting percentage and 12 blocks as well. Smith ended the weekend with 31 kills and 15 digs.
TCU will go back on the road as the Frogs head to the Spartan Spiketacular at UNC Greensboro on Sept. 20-21. TCU will face off against North Carolina Central on Friday at 3 p.m., before taking on George Mason and UNC Greensboro at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., respectively, on Saturday.
TCU Nike/Molten Invitational Final Standings
1. TCU (4-0)
2. Ole Miss (3-1)
3. Stephen F. Austin (2-2)
4. Houston (1-3)
5. Grambling (0-4)
TCU Nike/Molten Invitational All-Tournament Team
-Yvonne Igodan, TCU: Co-MVP
-Stephanie Holland, TCU: Co-MVP
-Ashley Smith, TCU
-Kara Morgan, Ole Miss
-Ty Laporte, Ole Miss
-Justice Walker, Stephen F. Austin
-Kadi Kullerkann, Houston
-Chantel McGill, Grambling