Clarksville, TN – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) volleyball team defeated Murray State in a thrilling, five-set Ohio Valley Conference victory (22-25, 25-19, 25-20, 23-25, 15-8) that not only gave the Governors a lead in the 38-year-old rivalry, but put them atop the conference standings.
Four APSU Govs tallied nine or more kills in the midweek matchup, with junior Mikayla Powell leading the team with 16.
Graduate student Brooke Moore collected her 12th double-double of the season in a 15-kill, 17-dig performance and sits 34 kills from moving up to third all-time in career kills.
Freshman Jaida Clark‘s 12th kill sealed the Govs’ victory, sending the Racers back to Murray, Kentucky with their fifth-straight loss.
Senior Claire Darland rounded out Austin Peay State University’s offensive leaders, tying her season-high with nine kills.
With UT Martin’s (10-11, 6-2) four-set loss to Southeast Missouri (15-5, 6-2), Tuesday, the Govs move to first in the OVC Standings with the Redhawks and Skyhawks half a match behind.
The Govs’ 6-1 start in conference play is tied for the best start in program history. The two other seasons that the Govs started 6-1 in conference play – 2017 and 2018 –the team went 14-2 in conference and won three combined OVC championships.
Set-by-set Austin Peay against Murray State
Austin Peay State University and Murray State battled back and forth in a first set that saw the score tied 14 times. A pair of kills by Clark knotted the score at 20 and brought a Murray State timeout; however, MSU finished on a 5-2 run to take the first set.
Powell and Moore led the Governors attack in the second set, combining for eight kills and a .571 hitting percentage. The Govs posted a .483 hitting percentage as team and evened the score with a 25-19 victory.
The Racers went on an 8-0 run early in the fourth set to take a 13-8 lead, but the Govs battled back and found themselves trailing 20-19 late. The two rivals traded scores to end the match and Murray State forced the fifth set with a 25-23 win.
The Govs picked up their fourth five-set victory of the season in a 15-8 win led by three kills by Powell and five service aces.
Austin Peay head coach Taylor Mott
On beating Murray State
“This win means more, not only because it is against Murray State, but that it put us one ahead in the all-time series against them and that it very well could be the last time that we ever play them in this gym for a conference match. This match had so much significance. President Licari was jumping up and cheering for us in the stands and Gerald Harrison was cheering us on the entire time too. We love to see that. It’s why we play.”
On the support from other athletic teams, Wednesday night
“That is why I believe we have such a great athletics department. The best athletics departments in the country are when athletes support other athletes. We all work our butts off, none of us have much free time, but when you see all those teams show up in the gym to support us against Murray, that is what it is all about. I am super grateful for all the athletes that were here and were loud. Seeing them in the stands showed our players that we got this and were going to win for all of them.”
On the team’s overall performance
Next Up For APSU Volleyball
The Austin Peay State University women’s volleyball team travels to the Music City for a two-match, Friday, Saturday series against the Tennessee State Tigers with the first match beginning at 6:00pm, Friday, followed by a noon, Saturday start.
Murray State 2, Austin Peay 3
Murray State Stats
Austin Peay Stats