CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – First team All-Ohio Valley Conference outside hitter Rachel McDonald led SIUE with 14 kills Thursday, but the fifth-seeded Cougars were defeated by fourth-seeded Jacksonville State 25-19, 25-22, 25-22 in the quarterfinals of the OVC Tournament.
McDonald turned in a strong match with a .407 hitting percentage with 14 kills, three errors and 27 total attempts.
As a team, SIUE hit .156 for the match. The Cougars end the season with a 9-20 record overall.
"We fought hard," said SIUE Head Coach Kendall Paulus. "We are really proud of the team for keeping their composure and staying competitive."
The Gamecocks, 21-9, advances to play the winner of top-seeded and tournament host Austin Peay and eighth-seeded Tennessee State.
Jacksonville State, which hit .266 as a team for the match, came out hitting hot with 11 kills on its first 15 swings of the match. Kaylie Milton paced the Gamecocks with 14 kills.
Paulus reflected on the Cougars' season.
"We are focusing on the success and growth we had as individuals as well as a team throughout the season."