Although the LSU volleyball team hasn’t been blowing by SEC opponents, the results have begun to pay off, with the Tigers sitting sixth in the conference, as of Thursday above some teams with high total win totals like Tennessee (16) and Ole Miss (15), pushing the Tigers to sixth in the standings.
Friday, the Tigers topped Georgia in five sets. After taking the first set, the Tigers would drop the next two to the Bulldogs, before winning the fourth to force the tiebreak, and then winning the tiebreak. LSU had a huge night out of Gina Tillis who led both teams with 37 kills.
Two day’s later, the Tigers fell to Auburn in another five-set match. Once again, LSU found itself down 2-1 following three sets and had to win the fourth set to force a tiebreak. Only this time, the LSU was unable to take the fifth set. Tillis was a bulk of the LSU offense once again, leading the Tigers with 20 kills. Haley Smith tallied 30 Digs in the loss.
The Tigers secured arguably the biggest win of the season when they defeated Tennessee in Baton Rouge on Wednesday 3-1. Against the Vols, the Tigers offense was a little more balanced with Toni Rodriguez, Cati Leak, and Tillis posting double-digit Kills, and the latter two also landing double-digit Digs.
By no means is 2-1 stretch considered amazing, but it’s needed if LSU wants to be in the hunt for a conference title. The Georgia game is a bit of a concern because the Dogs might be even worse than the Tigers, and going five sets, including trailing 2-1 at one point is a little alarming.
On the other hand, the Tennessee win is awesome, and even more impressive considering it happened in just four sets.
Offensively, it was promising to see Tillis breakout as she did. The Tigers will need all the offensive help they can get going forward. As of Thursday, the Tigers rank last in the conference in hitting percentage, and second to last in kills and assists.
The Tennessee game marked the first game of a stretch where LSU plays four of five at home, which features a mildly tough slate Mississippi State, Texas a&M and Auburn, for a second time.
LSU is still hanging around as the conference standings are still pretty tight, but the Tigers are going to have to string together multiple wins in order to make a big push in the conference standings.