“I thought our defense was great, and I thought our offense really got into some great rhythm when we were passing,” said head coach Lizzy Stemke. “Passing has been a real strength for us and has been a consistent strength, but today it struggled in chunks that were crucial. Then it was hard to get some momentum back. I thought our service game was a bit inconsistent today as well. Overall, though, we were a better team today.”
Georgia fell by scores of 25-17, 25-19 and 25-16, as it had to battle against 10 Mizzou service aces, including six from Courtney Eckenrode.
Sophomore Devan Porter led the offense with seven kills followed by redshirt junior Megan Spencer and redshirt senior Jasmine Eatmon with six kills each. Sophomore Kendall Kazor had a team-best seven digs while freshman Caroline Ostman stepped up with six. Eatmon tallied a team-high three blocks, including a solo stop.
Georgia came out hot in the first set, finding a 5-1 lead after kills from Spencer, Eatmon, Ostman and Amanda Dachs, and forcing an early Tiger timeout. Mizzou came back out of the break with momentum before tying it at 9 each. The teams went back and forth before two Georgia miscues gave Mizzou a 19-17 advantage. The visitors then rolled to a 25-17 win.
Georgia again found a lead in the second frame with an Eatmon ace and Kazor kill putting the team up 10-7. Mizzou came out aggressive at the service line, as an 8-0 run with five aces set the score at 15-11 for the Tigers. Under the serve of Ostman, Georgia got within two at 16-14, but the deficit would be too much, as Mizzou had the 2-0 match lead going to the locker rooms.
The defense held Missouri to its lowest hitting mark of .121 in the third frame, but it would be just short, as the Tigers won it 25-16. The Bulldogs had 11 digs with Kazor and junior Elle McCord recording three each to go with four team blocks, but with Mizzou up 15-14, a 10-2 spree closed out the frame for the Tigers.
The upcoming week has two televised games for Georgia. Georgia returns to action on Wednesday at Auburn with a 9 p.m. ET first serve on ESPNU. The Bulldogs are then at Alabama on Sunday, Oct. 25 for a 3 p.m. ET contest on SEC Network.