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Rebels push, fall to A&M in five sets

Ole Miss narrowly handed Texas A&M its first loss in nine matches, but the Aggies escaped from the Gillom Sports Center with a 3-2 win Friday night in an exciting match from start to finish.

With the narrow loss, the Rebels falls to 20-8 overall and 6-7 in the SEC, but just one match out of fifth place with five to play. Texas A&M improved to 18-6 overall and 11-2 in the SEC.

Ole Miss trailed 2-1 overall and by four late in the fourth set, before rallying to send it to a fifth. The two teams went toe-to-toe in the deciding set and the Rebels led 12-11 late, before A&M went on a four-point run to close it out 15-12 for the 3-2 win.

When the two teams met in College Station, the Aggies jumped on the Rebels early with their fast-paced offense, but the Ole Miss handled it much better right out of the gate, using an 8-2 run to go up 18-12 in the first set. A&M answered with a 7-2 run to close to within 20-19. At 23-23, sophomore Kate Gibson stepped and put the ball down for one of her 13 kills to give the Rebels set point, 24-23. The Aggies won the final three points though, to take the set 26-24 and a 1-0 lead in the match.

Back and forth

Both teams traded points to start the second set, but Ole Miss closed on a 15-7 run, after being tied 10-10, to win it 25-17 and head into the break 1-1.

Set three went much like the second set, but at 15-15, the Aggies went on a 6-1 run to force Ole Miss to call a timeout down 16-21. A&M went on to win the set 25-19 and take a 2-1 lead in the match.

The Rebels led set four 9-7 but then A&M used a 6-1 run to go up 13-10.