Sep 1, 2013
Long Beach, Calif. - Long Beach State was unable to capture a win over Kentucky, falling to the No. 17 Wildcats 25-17, 27-25, 25-15 Sunday in the final match of the Long Beach State Mizuno Invitational. Bre Mackie had eight kills on .533 hitting to pace the 49ers, while Delainey Aigner-Swesey made 10 kills to continue her double-digit streak.
Long Beach State (1-2) found some success offensively against Kentucky (1-2), hitting .216 against the Wildcats, but surrendered .371 hitting, making just 25 digs on the match while being out-dug by 14 digs.
Tied 5-5 early, Long Beach State took the first significant lead of the match, opening up a 10-6 lead on a solo block by Chisom Okpala. Kentucky was able to rally back and took a 12-11 lead on an ace from Billings. After a collision between Haleigh Hampton and Alex Reid, Kentucky took advantage of the momentum and took a 20-13 lead on the way to at 25-17 set one win.
Set two was much closer throughout, featuring 17 tie scores and six lead changes. Erin Juley and Okpala combined for the team's second straight block to take an 8-6 lead, but Kentucky rallied to take an 11-10 lead. With the Wildcats leading 18-16, Long Beach State scored a pair to tie the set at 18 on a Reid kill, and then took a 21-20 lead on a kill by Aigner-Swesey. A solo block by Bre Mackie gave the 49ers an opportunity to close out the set at 24-23, but Kentucky earned the sideout, and eventually went on to win the set 27-25 on a kill by Anni Thomasson.
Carrying the momentum from the third-set victory, Kentucky opened up a quick 9-4 lead, and eventually took a 15-7 edge, which carried the rest of the way in a 25-15 third-set loss.
Aigner-Swesey was named to the All-Tournament team after making 42 kills over the first three matches for Long Beach State. Illinois' Jocelynn Birks earned tournament MVP honors.
Long Beach State will play in another tournament next week, traveling to San Francisco to play three matches against Air Force, Miami (Fla.) and the host San Francisco Dons. Action starts for the 49ers on Friday, September 6 when the 49ers face Air Force at 1 p.m.
2013 Long Beach State Mizuno Invitational All-Tournament Team
Delainey Aigner-Swesey, Long Beach State
Morgan Bergren, Kentucky
Whitney Billings, Kentucky
Maddie Mayers, Illinois
Olivera Medic, Florida State
Nicole Walch, Florida State
Libero: Jennifer Beltran, Illinois
MVP: Jocelynn Birks, Illinois
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