College of Coastal Georgia’s volleyball team defeated Keiser University 3-0 Tuesday to advance to The Sun Conference semifinals.

Keiser took an early lead in the first game before the Mariners began a methodical comeback. The game was tied at 15 when Coastal Georgia took a lead it never gave up, winning 25-21.

The second game was another close one, with the game tied 16-16 before the Mariners won the next five points and closing out the second game by the same score as the first game — 25-21.

Coastal Georgia fell behind 5-0 to the Seahawks in the third game, forcing Mariners head volleyball coach Leah Mihm to call two timeouts to slow down the Seahawks’ momentum before the game was out of reach.

“I wanted to calm them down and get them refocused on the game plan,” she said.

The Mariners battled back, tying the game 24-24 and taking the next two points for a 26-24 win and the match.

Ashley Kot had 35 assists, six digs and six kills for the Mariners. Kyra White had 11 kills and one block; Adair Werley had three kills and two blocks and Alexis Downey had six kills, three aces, two digs and two blocks.

Sam Kepler had three kills; Laney Green had three aces and four digs; Addie Pedraza had 12 kills and one dig; Azure Werner had two kills; Kaci Hollenbacher had one dig; Molly Fletcher had one kill and Y. Rios Gonzalez had 13 digs and three assists for the Mariners.

Mihm said she expected a tight match against Keiser with both teams fighting to keep their seasons alive.

“They came out to play,” she said. “We anticipated a close match.”

Coastal Georgia will face Southeasthern in the conference semifinal game at 3:30 p.m. Friday. The game will be played at Webber International, the No. 1 seed in the tournament.

The Mariners lost both regular-season matches against Southeastern, with both matches going to five games. Mihm said her team has had lots of injuries this season, but she will have a healthy squad for Friday’s game.

“We’ve had a lot of injuries and lineup changes,” she said. “Everyone is back and that could make a difference. If we stay focused and believe in the game plan we’ll be fine.”

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