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September 26, 2013

Blazers’ volleyball tames the Tigers 3-1

LIVINGSTON, Ala. — The Valdosta State volleyball team overcame a tight battle and a rowdy atmosphere on the road to defeat West Alabama 3-1 in a Gulf South Conference action on Tuesday night in Alabama.

The win moves the Blazers to 10-2 on the season, while the squad remains undefeated in the conference at 3-0. The win also marks the fifth straight for the red and black.

Destiney Berry was announced as the GSC Volleyball Player of the Week on Tuesday, following a dominating weekend over Gulf South Conference opponents.

Berry, Jenna Kirkwood, and Lelalelei Nomura all reached double digits in the kill column on the night, and the team collectively dished out 51 assists.

The Blazers jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the match with a 25-21 victory, followed by a second set in which VSU completely outmatched the Tigers 25-14 to take a convincing 2-0 advantage.

Valdosta State slipped in the third set, however, falling 21-25 before answering with a thrilling final set in which the Blazers finished off the opposition with a kill from Ashley Lala to claim a 27-25 win.

With the loss, UWA falls to 7-4 on the season and 1-2 in conference play.

The GSC Volleyball Player of the Week honor was Berry's first of her career and marks the second straight week in which a Blazer volleyball student-athlete has earned the Player of the Week title.

Berry's weekend performance was highlighted by her strong play at the net against Alabama-Huntsville in the GSC opener on Friday.

In the contest, the Texas native blasted 16 kills in 30 attempts for a .300 hitting percentage, while also adding four  huge blocks for VSU on defense.

The Blazers' trusty middle blocker capped off her outstanding weekend with another stellar showing against conference rival North Alabama on Saturday, bringing her total stats on the weekend to a team-high 25 kills and a .317 average.

Her six solo blocks pushed her season total to 13, which places her at the top of the GSC in the solo blocks column.

After Berry’s game against UWA, she leads the GSC with 17 solo blocks. The next closest player only has eight.

Berry and the Blazers head back home to prepare for a weekend's worth of GSC volleyball action at The Complex, beginning with the Lee Flames, who come to town sporting a five game winning streak of their own along with a 2-0 conference record. The match will tip off at 7:00 p.m. on Friday night.

Valdosta State will follow up on Saturday hosting conference opponent Shorter at 1 p.m.

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