The Lady Vols (3-4, 3-4) claimed their first sweep of the season on the road against Auburn (0-7, 0-7) last night, defeating the Tigers (25-20, 25-17, 25-19) in straight sets.
In their last three meetings with Auburn, Tennessee has swept the Tigers twice on the road. Auburn has yet to get a win under its belt this season and has been defeated in straight sets in six of its seven matches played so far.
It was a game of season-highs for the Lady Vols, overall hitting .308, in addition to four players .250 or better. These players included Raquel “Rocky” Perinar with .467 and Ava Bell with .429.
To the surprise of nobody, Lily Felts managed to net 18 kills, hit .333, and produced 10 digs. This is the fifth consecutive match where Felts has landed herself in double-digit kills, and her fourth straight match with a double-double.
Bell and Danielle Mahaffey each collected eight kills and Perinar tallied three kills and a team-high three blocks.
On the service line, Tennessee brought down a season-high of seven aces and managed to keep the Tigers at bay for three sets. Leading these serving efforts were Madison Coulter and JaKya Moore who combined for six aces, career-highs for both.
The first set was the closest for the Lady Vols and the Tigers. Auburn was able to get within one point of Tennessee (20-19) late in the set but ended up missing a serve that set them back further.
Once Coulter arrived at the service line, she assisted in three straight points for the Lady Vols. Despite Auburn’s comeback efforts, Felts delivered her fifth ace of the night to push Tennessee to the 25-20 victory.
Things weren’t as close in the second set. The Lady Vols hit an impressive .400 as a team and tallied 18 kills. Felts alone delivered seven of those kills and had a .385 hitting percentage. Perinar also picked up five kills. Setter Natalie Hayward delivered two kills right over the net, as well. The Lady Vols took the set 25-17.
Looking forward to their sweep, the Lady Vols didn’t let up on the Tigers in set three, hitting a .333 as a team. The service line produced six of the seven aces tallied in set three. Moore scored all three of her aces in the third, while Coulter earned two of her three.
Felts also produced an ace, in addition to six more kills. Bell and Mahaffey both hit .750 and collected three kills to help nudge Tennessee to that 25-19 victory.
The Lady Vols will play next tonight, Thursday, November 19 at 6 p.m. in Auburn, Alabama. The game will be broadcast on SEC Network+.