By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information
MARTIN, Tenn. – It was a tough end to the 2022 season for the Tennessee Tech volleyball team, as the No. 2 seeded Golden Eagles fell to No. 7 Lindenwood in the quarterfinals of the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament Wednesday afternoon, 3-0.
The Lions broke away from the purple and gold in the opening set of the day snapping a 6-6 draw with five straight points. That lead expanded to as much as nine at set point, with Lindenwood seemingly in the clear at 24-15.
The Golden Eagles refused to back down, rattling off six straight points before a timeout was finally called by the Lions. Tech managed two more points for an 8-0 run, capped by a huge kill from right side Morgan Gish, but Lindenwood finally broke the streak and claimed the opener 25-23.
Tech seemed to shake off the slow start from set one by building its own sizable lead in the second game, moving out in front by as much as six at 14-8. Without batting an eye, the Lions responded in chunks, using a few mini runs to flip the script and win the set 25-19 behind a 17-5 run.
Lindenwood put its foot on the gas and ran with momentum in the third set, completing its 3-0 win with a 25-11 decision in the finale.
The defense of the Lions held Tech at bay throughout the match, limiting the purple and gold to just 28 kills and three total blocks for the match. Lindenwood's offense also put forth a strong effort, tallying 42 terminations on a .330 attack while racking up 10 service aces.
Gish led the Golden Eagle effort on the day, hitting .471 with a team-high nine kills with a block. Competing in her final match in the purple and gold, senior middle blocker Taylor Dorsey capped her brilliant career with six kills and a block with a .385 hitting percentage.
Despite the loss, the purple and gold put forth one of the more successful campaigns in program history in its fifth season under the watch of head coach Jeannette Phillips. The Golden Eagles posted the most total wins and OVC victories since winning both the regular-season and tournament titles in 2008, finishing 17-14 and 14-4.
A school-record-tying four Golden Eagles took home postseason honors from the league, highlighted by rookie Jordan Karlen becoming the first player in OVC history to win both Setter and Freshman of the Year in the same season. She was also the first Tech player ever to win Setter of the Year and third member of the purple and gold recognized as the league's top rookie.
Photo by Alex Boggis, UT Martin Media Relations