UTSA sweeps Marshall to advance to Conference USA Tournament title match
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — After breaking the Conference USA Tournament hitting percentage record in its Friday victory over Southern Mississippi, the Roadrunners delivered the second-highest hitting percentage (.478) in a tournament match in Saturday’s C-USA Tournament semifinal sweep of Marshall. UTSA won by scores of 25-20, 25-21, and 25-23.
Conference USA Player of the Year McKenzie Adams had a match-high 19 kills and Dajana Boskovic down another 12 winners with a .632 hitting percentage to lead UTSA into Sunday’s title match. Jessica Waldrip and Annie Kunes delivered match-highs with 42 assists and 12 digs, respectively.
UTSA (23-7) got eight kills from Adams on 13 attempts and 15 assists from Waldrip in the opening set as the Birds continued their torrid hitting pace from Friday’s record-setting performance against Southern Miss. UTSA recorded a .484 hitting percentage in the frame. Kunes led the defensive effort with seven digs.
Laura Der paced Marshall (16-16) with a team-high 13 kills.
In the second stanza the teams traded points to a 15-all tie until UTSA found its stride with a 10-6 run to end it. During that final run Adams finished four kills and Boskovic added two more to secure the commanding 2-0 advantage.
The final set featured 19 ties and seven lead changes before Dempsey Thornton’s back-to-back kills broke a 23-all tie and clinched the title match berth for the Roadrunners.
“That was a really good Marshall team and our girls just rose to the occasion. We came out like a ball of fire and I kept telling (our team) they’re not going to go away, said head coach Laura Neugebauer-Groff. “They’re not going to go away and they didn’t go away. When you look at the stats, they’re pretty evenly matched and it just came down to the end.”
UTSA will take on the winner of the Tulane ()/Tulsa () semifinal on Sunday at 1 p.m. on CBS Sports Network.