PBC Tournament: Augusta State Wins 3-2 Thriller over USC Aiken
AUGUSTA, GA – Down 12-8 in the fifth set, the fifth-seeded Augusta State Jaguars scored eight of the final 10 points in the match to take the set 15-13 and defeat fourth-seeded USC Aiken 3-2 in the quarterfinals of the PBC Tournament on Friday. With that win, the Jaguars (15-18) advance to the PBC semifinals on Saturday where they will face top-seeded Armstrong Atlantic State. USC Aiken (15-15) sees their season come to a close following their third loss to the Jaguars this year. Match scores were 18-25, 25-23, 23-25, 25-21 and 16-14.
USC Aiken took the first and third sets and were in position to win the match outright in the fourth. The Pacers led 13-12 before going on a 6-1 run to lead 19-13. Hannah Tierney had two kills during the run, but a kill from ASU’s Kristen Koch put an end to that and began a string of five straight Jaguar points. Jessica Hanson had back-to-back kills and three of the five points during the run. Down by one a 20-19, the Jaguars got some help from USCA errors as the Pacers recorded three straight attack errors and a service error to give ASU a 23-21 lead. Another attack error and a kill from Alex Rohlfing iced the set for ASU.
With the crowd of 243 filling the Christenberry Fieldhouse with noise, the fifth set was a back-and-forth affair throughout. The Pacers led 12-8 before back-to-back attack errors and a kill from Mandy Irizarry brought the Jaguars to within one. Rohlfing again came through with a big hit that tied the score at 13, but the Pacers had a match point at 14-13 following an ASU error. Koch again provided the big hits with back-to-back kills for the 15th and 16th points as ASU scored three in a row to win the match.
Rohlfing had a career-high 23 kills to lead the Jaguars. The freshman had her 11th double-double as she added 10 digs and hit .380. Koch added 13 kills while Hanson had 10. Andria Tagarelli led Augusta State with 18 digs while Krystin Wahlig had 48 assists and 12 digs. Augusta State hit .200 as a team and collected six blocks.
Emily Maasen and Endea Ellison led the Pacers with 13 kills each while Susan MacClary added 12 and Shannon Byers 10 with 18 digs. Samantha Lukralle led the Pacers with 29 digs as USCA as a team out-dug Augusta State 86-78. The Pacers hit .209 as a team and had nine team blocks. Alex Petcok and Sheila Walsh each had 21 assists.
Augusta State will meet Armstrong at 6:00 pm at the Christenberry Fieldhouse. ASU will be making their first appearance in the semifinals since 2007. Flagler and UNC Pembroke will play in the first semifinal at 4:00 pm.