Trojans advance to the Sun Belt Semifinals

The Troy Trojans advanced to the Sun Belt Conference Volleyball Tournament Semifinals with a 3-2 win over the Arkansas State Red Wolves in the quarterfinals on Thursday afternoon in Foley.

Troy fell behind early, losing the first set 25-20, but responded by tying the match in the second set with a 25-18 win. Troy took the lead in the match with a 25-14 win in the third set but the Red Wolves forced a fifth and decided set by taking the fourth by a score of 25-17.

In the fifth set, Troy faced elimination as Arkansas State jumped out to a 14-11 lead, holding game point. The Trojans scored three straight points to tie the score. Arkansas State retook the lead 15-14 but the Trojans answered when Amiah Butler earned a kill. Troy jumped ahead 16-15 on an attack error by the Red Wolves and then Tori Hester earned the game-winning kill to give the Trojans the 17-15 win in the set.

Hester led Troy with 18 kills and nine digs, while Butler tallied 15 kills and Julia Brooks totaled 13 kills and three blocks. Halston Hillier also chipped in with 12 kills and four blocks, while Amara Anderson had 53 assists and seven digs. Jaci Messa had 18 digs and Caroline Darracott had 14 digs.

The Trojans will play in the Conference Semifinals on Saturday at 4 p.m. against the winner of James Madison vs. Georgia Southern.