Analyzing the victory: Texas State 3, Georgia State 1

Senior Sports Reporter

What the win means: This match began conference play for both teams, and the Bobcats showed their presence throughout. Texas State dominated the majority of the match even though Georgia State ran away with some big runs. Texas State recorded a better hit percentage, more kills, set assists, and digs than the Panthers. The Bobcats were projected to finish second in the Sun Belt this season and they showed why tonight.

Turning point: The Bobcats and Panthers were separated by one point, 15-14, after Georgia State stormed back from 14-8 deficit in the second set. Texas State needed to buckle down and break their streak in order to take control of the match. The Bobcats then went on a 10-4 run to close out the set and it gave them a 2-0 lead in the match.  The second set victory was led by Morgan Lewis, junior middle blocker, who converted five kills on eight attempts.

Spotlight player: Morgan Lewis. The Bobcats might have found a gem with transfer student Morgan Lewis. The junior came into the match third on the team in kills. She passed Shelby Vas Matt, junior outside hitter, with 13 kills tonight to give Lewis 81 kills on the year. She now only trails Jordan Kohl who owns 114 kills of her own. Lewis also leads the team in blocks against with 41 after converting a match-high six tonight.

Erin Hoppe is the starting setter: Coming into the season Erin Hoppe, sophomore setter, and Emily Shelton, junior setter, were 1A and 1B as the team’s setters. Shelton started off the season getting the majority of the playing time, but Hoppe has taken over the competition. “Hoppe has won the spot,” Chisum said. Hoppe has played in every set for team in the last six matches, and started every set against Georgia State.

Good: Winning the battle at the net. Texas State came into the match with 10 players on the roster who are 6-feet or taller compared to four for Georgia State. The height advantage was on display for the Bobcats all night long. The team converted on kills with a .235 average and won the attack error matchup 26-24. Kohl and Lewis stood out with a combined 27 kills and nine blocks.

Bad: Allowing Georgia State to stick around. Texas State had Georgia State on the ropes in the second set. The Panthers trailed 14-8 and Texas State had already won set one. Georgia State stormed back to bring the lead to one at 15-14 and the set was turning their way. Texas State found the stroke as they finished off the set on a 10-4 run. Georgia State won set three to give them hope, but the Bobcats finished them off in set four. The team showed resiliency tonight, but their killer instincts need to kick into gear earlier.

Ugly: Slow starts. Texas State started off sets one and three trailing. The first set opened up 4-0 by Georgia State and 5-2 in set three. Texas State made the correct adjustments, but they could do a better job making the Panthers uncomfortable earlier in the road. If the trend continues they could find themselves in a rough atmosphere in Sun Belt play.

What they said: “This was a huge statement win for us,” Lewis said. “We played really well all around and teams need to start looking out for us.”

What's next: Texas State finishes off their weekend against the Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns. The Bobcats beat ULL in both meetings a year ago. Texas State won at home 3-0 and 3-1. The Ragin’ Cajuns are currently last in the Sun Belt with a 3-8 record.

Follow Matt Gurevitz on Twitter at @Matt_Gurevitz.