OXFORD, Miss. -- Arkansas State was a top-20 RPI and NCAA Tournament team in 2015 and they returned just about everybody from last year, but the Ole Miss volleyball team was up for the challenge Tuesday night at The Pavilion at Ole Miss, coming away with a 3-1 win to remain undefeated at 7-0.
The Rebels got off to a hot start, hitting .455 in the first set to win it 25-17 and take the early momentum. They never let up dominating the second set 25-14 to go into the locker room at the break up 2-0.
Arkansas State rebounded in the third set, hitting .294 stay alive for at least one more set. The Red Wolves built a 10-6 lead early and increased it to seven (19-12) late. They held on for 25-20 to force a fourth set.
Not wanting to go to a fifth set in back-to-back matches, Ole Miss raced out to a quick 10-4 lead in set four and never looked back, winning it 25-16 to close out the win.
Earlier in the day, senior Aubrey Edie was named the SEC Setter of the Week after a record-setting weekend in which she earned MVP honors at the Rebel Classic to lead the team to their 10th straight regular season tournament title. Edie passed out 50 assists, setting up the Rebels to hit .369 in the match with five players above .300.
One of the players who continues to shine early in the season is junior outside hitter Lexi Thompson, who posted her SEC-leading sixth double-double in seven matches. She finished with 18 kills and 11 digs and hit .375. Kate Gibson also was strong from the outside, powering her way to 16 kills on a .333 clip. From the right side, Kathryn Cather posted 14 kills on a .500 mark and tallied 5 blocks.
Freshman Nicole Purcell finished the night with a team-leading 14 digs. Junior middle blocker Taylor Alexander tallied 7 blocks, one off her career high, and chipped in 5 kills on a .333 clip.
- Ole Miss improved to 7-0 on the season and 4-0 at home.
- The Rebels improved to 35-1 in non-conference matches under head coach Steven McRoberts.
- Ole Miss now owns a 36-20 all-time record against Arkansas State.
- The Rebels posted 10 blocks, marking the fifth time in seven matches to reach double-digits.
- With their .369 hitting percentage, the Rebels have hit above .200 in four of their seven matches this season and improved their overall percentage to .251.
Ole Miss heads to Nashville, Tennessee Sept. 9-10 for the Lipscomb Invitational.