10/09/13 — South Central turns back CBA in 4 sets

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South Central turns back CBA in 4 sets

By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on October 9, 2013 1:49 PM

PIKEVILLE -- Charles B. Aycock was a few key plays away from forcing a decisive fifth set with Eastern Carolina 3-A/4-A Conference rival South Central on Tuesday evening.

Suddenly, it was the Falcons who made the key plays. South Central rallied in the fourth set and earned a 25-13, 21-25, 25-19, 25-21 victory.

The Falcons raced out to a 9-3 lead in the opening set as the Golden Falcons struggled to find their way early. Marissa Starkie pounded out two kills and delivered a pair of blocks to help South Central close out the first set.

Aycock trailed 13-10 midway through set two before head coach Emily Burke used a timeout to settle her team. The Golden Falcons responded and got middle hitter Meredith Burroughs involved. Burroughs tallied three of her 13 kills in the second set as Aycock evened the match at one set apiece.

"She's a leader for sure," Burke said. "The girls follow her whether she realizes it or not. When she's having a good game everybody is having a good game. They feel like she's somebody they can lean on."

The Falcons started strong in set three before the Golden Falcons rallied behind Emily Patnaude. Patnaude delivered two off-speed hits and a kill in three consecutive points to pull Aycock to within 13-10.

Burroughs' combo block with Taylor Daniels cut South Central's advantage to 17-15. Unforced errors down the stretch haunted the Golden Falcons.

Aycock began set four with plenty of energy and teamwork, and built a 7-2 lead. Burroughs supplied four kills as the Golden Falcons maintained 13-8 advantage.

The Falcons fought back behind a kill and an off-speed hit from Starkie. Jerricah Cabacar's kill put South Central in front 19-18.

Nikhaule Singleton contributed a key off-speed hit and Isla Farrow added a block to give the Falcons a late 21-19 lead. Starkie and Kaylee McCord's combo block finished off the match.

"Having the lead late is something we didn't do the last time we played them," Burke said. "I'm happy to see the turnaround this second time through the conference. We haven't had a lead very often in situations like that. It's something we can learn from."

Aycock (6-10 overall, 2-8 ECC) travels to Eastern Wayne on Thursday.