Golden Eagles winless in Tiger Invitational


Southern Miss fell to 12-4 following a tough Tiger Invitational this past weekend in Memphis, Tennessee.

Southern Miss opened the invitational against in-state rival Mississippi State. The Golden Eagles rallied from two sets down to force a fifth set, only to fall for the first time in a fifth set this season.

Junior Stephany Purdue registered 16 kills while senior Mary Pursell contributed 20 digs. Freshman Sarah Bell added 40 assists along with seven kills, eight digs and three aces.

As a team, the Golden Eagles finished with 52 kills, six aces and six team blocks. The loss of the fifth set gave the Golden Eagles just their second loss of the season.

On day two of the invitational, Southern Miss faced host Memphis in an early afternoon matchup. The Golden Eagles dropped a four-set match 3-1 (25-22, 25-16, 18-25, 25-15).

Against the Tigers, a pair of Golden Eagles recorded double- doubles as Purdue finished with 17 kills and 18 digs while freshman Kylie Grandy recorded 12 kills and 15 digs. Bell nearly

record a double-double as well, registering 37 assists and eight digs. Southern Miss finished the match with 47 kills, four aces and 65 digs as a team.

The Golden Eagles concluded the Tiger Invitational versus Austin Peay, but fell in five sets, 3-2 (23-25, 25-20, 16-25, 30-28, 15-9).

The Golden Eagles struggled to keep control of the match against Austin Peay. After losing the first set by two, Southern Miss captured the second set and dropped the third set. In a pivotal fourth set, Southern Miss forced a fifth set only to fall in the fifth set 15-9.

Purdue led the way in the final match of the invitational with 20 kills and 16 digs. Grandy, Rachel Johnson and Elise Ames tallied 10 kills each. Grandy also chipped in 15 digs with Pursell added 21. Bell added 14 and collected 47 assists.

Southern Miss ended the match with 62 kills, eight aces, 84 digs and 10 team blocks. Since starting 10-0, the Golden Eagles have gone 2-4 in its last six matches ahead of conference play, a tough time to hit a cold spell.

Southern Miss opens Conference USA play on the road against Louisiana Tech tonight at 6 p.m.