STEPHENVILLE – On the verge of being swept, Tarleton State rallied to win three straight sets and knock off Texas A&M-Commerce in five behind a career effort from Katie Covell Saturday afternoon at Wisdom Gym.
Less than 24 hours removed from a tough, five-set loss to Texas Woman’s, Tarleton struggled out of the gate by falling behind the Lions 3-10.
A Covell kill got the TexAnns started on a 21-14 run to claw the TexAnns back to even and force extra points in the opening set. The Lions held the advantage and ended the set at 28-26 after a TexAnn error and a kill.
The second set saw neither team able to take an early lead and ultimately moving into a 17-17 tie. Commerce was able to take the lead and hold on to it with an 8-5 run down the stretch to win 25-22 and go up 2-0 in the match.
The TexAnns steered away from the potential sweep by jumping out to an early 5-0 lead in the third set. Of the opening five points, there was a Stacie Murrah kill to begin the game and then back-to-back blocks – one by Murrah and one by Kelsey Raglin with Kaitlyn White a part of both.
The Lions climbed back to a 9-7 deficit but Covell ended the threat again with a kill to start a 9-3 TexAnn run and extend the lead to 18-10. The teams ended the set by splitting the last 14 volleys 7-7, giving Tarleton the win and forcing the fourth game.
Commerce took a three-point lead late into the set, leading 20-17, but Covell answered the call yet again with a kill off a pass from Danielle Barker, to make it 18-20. Covell then served up five straight points to give Tarleton a 23-20 lead. A Lion block ended Covell’s run but a Jazmine Green kill and Emily Klein service ace ended the set in Tarleton’s favor 25-21.
In the final game, Tarleton carried its momentum and built a slim, early lead of two points and took it all the way to 9-7. A Green kill made the score 10-7 and started a 6-1, game-ending run for Tarleton.
Covell led the team with a career-high 19 kills to go along with 14 digs for her seventh double-double of the season. Murrah and Green each had 13 kills of their own. Tarleton out-hit the Lions .227 to .212 for the match.
Danielle Barker led the team with 54 assists – her second straight 50-assist effort – while Emily Klein topped the 30-dig mark for the third time in her career.
Tarleton will return to action Tuesday night when they hit the road for Austin to take on St. Edward’s at 7 p.m.