ATLANTA, GA - Mo Simmons tallied a career-high 19 kills to lead Clemson to a 3-0 (25-13, 25-21, 25-10) win over Georgia State (2-9) on Friday night in the Georgia Tech Classic. The win was the 500th in head coach Jolene Jordan Hoover’s career, as Clemson (9-2) played a final non-conference match before opening up league play Friday at 7:00 pm against Georgia Tech.
Clemson played a strong match all-around, tallying 49 kills in the three-set win, and held the Panthers to just 19 and a .029 hitting percentage. Clemson had 18 kills in the third set alone, led by seven from Simmons, who is playing close to her home in Buford, GA. Simmons entered the match averaging an ACC-best 3.84 kills per set, and finished the match at 4.06 per set. Her previous high had been 16, which she had accomplished on three occasions.
Senior Natalie Patzin had 15 digs to move into 10th on Clemson’s all-time list, moving past Robin Kibben (1,128; 1991-94) and finishing with 1,132 in her career. Sandra Adeleye had 10 kills in 18 swings and led all players with four blocks.
Kamryn Sherman started at setter, and had 28 assists and nine digs, while Hannah Brenner had 10 assists to go with four kills. Karis Watson had three kills in four swings, while Kalah Jones added a pair in front of many of her friends and family.
Hoover claimed her 500th career victory in the match in her 23rd season, just weeks after claiming her 400th at Clemson, as she now sports a 407-220 mark at Clemson and 500-251 overall ledger.
The Panthers came out swinging in the first set, taking a quick 5-2 lead off of four Clemson errors. Sherman then found Simmons for a pair of kills, and Lou Davis added an ace as Clemson stormed to a 6-5 lead. Holding on to a one-point lead, Clemson outscored Georgia State, 15-5 down the stretch, with four more kills from Simmons leading the way. In the set, Clemson hit .273 with 16 kills, while allowing just six from the Panthers.
The second set was much tighter, as each team struggled to gain an edge in the match. The Panthers took a 13-11 lead, but the Tigers came back to take a 16-15 lead. Down 19-18, the Tigers outscored the Panthers 7-2 down the stretch, and held Georgia State to a -.031 hitting percentage in the set.
The third set was all Clemson. The Tigers went to Simmons, who connected on kills for five of Clemson’s first seven points. Clemson stretched the lead to 9-2 and kept that edge until 18-10. From there, with Simmons serving, Clemson rattled off seven straight points to win the third, 25-10. Clemson hit .412 with 18 kills.