News from MSU Media Relations--September 14

The latest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...Men's Golf, Women's Golf and Volleyball.

Men's Golf
ROCKY FACE, GA. - On day two at the Carpet Capital Classic in Rocky Face, Ga., the 28th-ranked Mississippi State men's golf team finished the day in a tie for 15th place. The Bulldogs shot a seven-over-par, 295 at the par-72 Farm Golf Club.

Senior Carlos Sainz, Jr. led the way for MSU by firing an even-par 72 and sits in a tie for 18th place with a two day total of one-over-par. Senior Matt Fast shot a one-over-par which places him in a tie for 18th place as well. Redshirt freshman Lee Heaton, carded a one-over-par 73 in round two to finish with a two day total of five-over-par, 149. Redshirt junior Brian Mason posted a five-over-par 77 giving him a 155 for the tournament.

Chattanooga posted a tournament low five-under-par 283, placing them in first place after a two day total of 574. Falling from first to second place, East Tennessee State posted a two-over-par, 290 to give them a 577 for the tournament. Clemson stands alone in third with a two-over-par 288 in round two for a 578 overall. Tennessee is four shots back in fourth place with a 582 and Mississippi rounds out the top-five with a two day total of 583.

Play will resume tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. EST. Live stats will be available at

Women's Golf
CHARLESTON, S.C. - Mississippi State's women's golf squad will begin competition in the first tournament of the season on Sunday at the Cougar Classic in Charleston, S.C. Joining the Lady Bulldogs at the Yeamans Hall Golf Club will be 21 other teams, including five that finished in the nation's top 25 last season and 11 that finished ranked in the top 50.

Traveling to Charleston to compete for MSU this weekend will be sophomores Mallory Batson and Erika Thornton, juniors Gina Sharp and Leigh Phillips and along with freshman Hannah Weathersby. Together, the group brings 43 individual career tournament appearances of experience to the event, where Mississippi State finished 12th a season ago.

"I'm excited about getting this season started on a golf course that the players are familiar with," MSU head coach Christi Sanders said. "We're coming off of a competitive team qualifying and hope to continue that intensity into the first event."

Last year, current junior Suzanne Stanley and former senior Julia Huh paced Mississippi State with identical scores of 224, good for 35th place overall.

Play will begin Sunday at 6 a.m. CT.

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Junior Ioana Demian and freshmen Faith Steinwedell and Grace Hoyt recorded double-doubles Friday afternoon at Humphrey Coliseum, leading Mississippi State (5-4) to a hard-fought 3-1 win over Centenary College (2-7) in the opening round of the MSU Bulldog Club Invitational.

Centenary stunned State with a 25-21 win in the opening set before the Bulldogs scrambled back to win 25-22, 25-20 and 26-24. In the nightcap, a first-ever meeting with the Central Arkansas Sugar Bears, the Bulldogs dropped their third five-set affair of the season, bowing to UCA 3-2 (25-17, 12-25, 25-23, 14-25, 6-15).

The Bulldogs close out the MSU Bulldog Club Invitational Saturday at 1:30 p.m., taking on the Memphis Tigers, (6-3), a 3-1 winner over Central Arkansas (25-19, 25-27, 25-22, 25-23) and a 3-0 winner over Centenary (25-15, 2524, 25-13).

With 12 kills and 14 digs in the opener, Demian notched her third double-double of the season. Steinwedell, an outside hitter, registered a rookie season-best and match-leading 16 digs and backed that with 10 kills for her first career double-double. Freshman setter Grace Hoyt, in her third start of the campaign, attained double-double status with 29 assists and 11 digs. She also shared match honors with three blocks.

The Bulldogs struggled in the early going, held by the Centenary Ladies to .031 hitting in the openings set. State pulled away from a 22-22 deadlock with three straight points to even the match with a 25-22 win in the second set.

A pair of service aces down the stretch, one by libero Dorey Gray and another by Steinwedell lifted State to a 25-20 set three win and a 2-1 edge in the match. And in the fourth set, State warmed up to a match-best .250 hitting percentage and tallied 18 kills to pull out a 26-24 match-clincher. Demian, freshman Mandy Mellencamp and sophomore middle blocker Ashley Newsome had four kills each in the final set. For the match Mellencamp finished with seven kills on 10 swings with just one hitting error (.600). Newsome finished with five kills. Newsome and Mellencamp delivered the final two kills of the match as State pulled away from a 24-24 tie to clinch the match.

Gray reached double figures with 15 digs.

Bethany Kern paced Centenary with 13 kill and 15 digs. Brianna Kern followed with 12 kills and 12 digs while Christina Golden finished with 11 kills.

The one-two punch of Demian and senior Cristina Jucan was not enough firepower to lift the Bulldogs past the Sugar Bears, who overcame a 2-1 State lead in the match to win going way. The Bulldogs hit at a .258 clip in the opening set, but struggled offensively for much of the remainder of the match. Jucan came off the bench to paced State with 14 kills and Demian added 11.

But the homestanding Bulldogs managed but three kills in the second set, and after regaining the advantage with a 25-23 win in the third set, managed but 11 kills the remainder of the match. UCA raced to a 6-1 lead and never trailed in registering a lopsided 25-14 set four win that tied the match at two sets apiece. State led only briefly in the deciding fifth set when Faith Steinwedell opened the frame with a service ace. Central Arkansas reeled off five consecutive points and rolled on to a match-clinching 15-6 set five win.

UCA out-hit State .252 to .105 and amassed a 60-43 edge in kills and an 8-3 advantage in team blocking. Emily Gordon and Jessica Hays combined for 29 kills to lead a foursome of Sugar Bears with double figure totals in kills. Gordon, with a match-high 15 kills, did not have an attack error and finished with a red-hot .682 hitting percentage. Chloe Smith tallied 12 kills and a match-high five blocks and Amicha Williams finished with 11 kills. Kelly Bence finished with a match-high 29 digs.

Three Bulldogs reached double figures in digs --- libero Dorey Gray had 16, Faith Steinwedell 14 and Demian added 12.

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