With the loss in the quarterfinals, after upsetting Southern Miss in the opening round, Marshall is eliminated from the tournament and finishes its season with a record of 13-15 overall, while UAB improves to 24-5 on the season and advances to play the winner of No. 11 UTEP and No. 3 Rice.
Leading 2-0 in the match, UAB raced out to a 15-8 lead and extended that lead to 16-10 before Ross and Kristin Marcum downed two kills each to bring the score to 16-13. From there the Blazers scored eight of the next 11 points to post a 24-16 lead.
Layne Kehl drilled her ninth kill of the match to make it 24-17, but Ivan Bozic sealed the match for UAB with her 12th kill of the contest. UAB swept the regular season series against Marshall, and with Friday's victory, the Blazers now own a 5-4 advantage in the all-time series.
"I thought UAB did a great job of never allowing us to get in the flow of the game," head coach Mitch Jacobs said following the match. "UAB just served tougher and played tougher than us."
Kehl tied her career-high with nine kills, while Megan Carlson paced the Herd defense with a match-best 14 digs. Marcum added seven kills and nine digs, while Fleming passed out 33 assists in the losing effort.
On Thursday, MU's Marcum registered 11 kills and 12 digs and Carlson blasted 11 kills and 13 digs as the 10th-seeded Thundering Herd defeated No. 7 Southern Miss 3-0 (25-23, 25-19, 25-13) in the first round.
After falling to Southern Miss twice during the regular season, the third time was the charm for Marshall in 2008, as the Herd extended its all-time series lead to 6-3. "It was possibly the most focused we've been in a long time," Jacobs said. "We were playing some really good ball in the first four or five weeks of the season, and then it just kind of slipped away."
In addition to the double-double performances from Marcum and Carlson, Ross finished with 10 kills and a .316 hitting percentage. Marcum also added three solo blocks and a pair of assisted blocks as the Herd out-blocked Southern Miss 11.5-6.0, Thursday. Marshall also held the higher seeded Golden Eagles to a hitting percentage of .046. Emily Sullivan finished with seven kills and four blocks (1 solo, 3 assisted) while Kehl downed four kills and assisted on four blocks.
The Marshall offensive was paced by Fleming's 34 assists, while Jessica Dhoore collected 12 digs as the third Herd player to reach double figures. "Liz Fleming diversifying our offense was a big deal," Jacobs added. "Just the fact that she wasn't being predictable with our patterns of offense was a big start. Being Young, we've tried to be unpredictable. I say Liz was fantastic (Friday)."