Warhawks net historic victory versus Georgia Southern Eagles

Josh Dean

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Since joining the Sunbelt in 2006, the Warhawk volleyball team has never  landed a win in its conference-opening game.

All of that changed Saturday inside Hanner Fieldhouse in a spectacular five-set match.

The old demons appeared to be rearing their ugly heads as ULM found itself down 4-1 to start the first set.

Junior Taylor Zaeske then stepped up in the service game and led the Warhawks on a 7-1 run to give them an 8-5 lead.

After several ties at 12, 14 and 18 apiece, ULM stood on the precipice of taking the first set with a 24-22 lead.

Zaeski then delivered a block on an attempted kill by the Eagles to secure the first set for the Warhawks.

Georgia Southern began the next set at another quick clip to take an early 9-5 lead. After trading points, the Eagles held onto a 20-18 lead.

A five-point run put ULM within two points of a commanding two set lead. Georgia battled back with five straight points to draw the match even at two sets apiece.

After a break the Eagles came out and dominated the third.

With another quick start Georgia State scored the first 8 of 10 points. After a temporary run brought the Warhawk deficit to 10-7, the Eagles surged ahead again taking a 21-14 lead.

Despite staving off six set points, the Warhawks finally fell in the third to the Georgia State onslaught.

With one set standing in between them and defeat the Warhawks battled to take a 10-7 advantage to begin the fourth.

Georgia State then went on a 6-0 run to reclaim the lead. After trading points the Warhawks went on a 7-2 run to claim a 19-18 advantage.

With set point within their reach Shearer and Zaeski combined to on a block to give the Warhawks the fourth 25-23.

The first 14 points of the deciding fifth set featured seven ties.

After trading points the Warhawks eventually won the set on a strike by junior Hope Pawlik.

Volleyball faces off against UAB Moday in Birmingham inside Bartow Arena.