The No. 25 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (1-1) fell to the No. 21 Utah Utes (2-0) in three games, 27-30, 27-30, 23-30. Kyleen Bell led the Jackets with 11 kills and three blocks, followed by Maja Pachale, who had nine kills. Defensively, Tech was led by Kele Eveland who recorded seven digs. Eveland also dished out 34 assists in the match.
Game one and game two were sideout battles as neither team held more than a four point advantage in either game. The Utes used precise hitting in game one as they hit .323 as a team, while holding the Jackets to a .244 hitting percentage. Utah was able to pull ahead 24-19, and Tech were unable to mount a charge, dropping game one, 27-30. Game two continued to be a see-saw back and forth, but with the game tied at 25-25, Utah was able to climb ahead on four kills and two Jacket errors.
In game three, the Utes jumped out to a 21-12 lead, and defensively shut down the Jackets. Tech managed to record just 10 kills, while the Utes tallied 18. With a commanding lead, the Jackets were unable to sustain a comeback, and dropped the final game, 23-30. “This was a great opportunity for our team to play a nationally ranked team on its home court,” said head coach Shelton Collier. “I thought we played we a great deal of determination. Utah played some good volleyball, but I definitely think that our team can build on this match.”
The Yellow Jackets will return to action on Saturday at 12 p.m. when they face Rhode Island in their final match of the Utah Classic.