Jayhawks Swept By Crimson Tide, 3-0
Aug. 26, 2006
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. –
Solid defense wasn’t enough as Kansas volleyball dropped its first match of the season to Alabama, 3-0, Saturday night in the final match of the Academy Sports/Crimson Tide Invitational at the CAVE. Senior Jamie Mathewson and junior Emily Brown led all players with 13 digs as the Jayhawks (2-1) fell to Bama, 21-30, 20-30 and 18-30.
Brown and senior Jana Correa were named to the all-tournament team as KU, Bama and Miami finished the weekend with a 2-1 record.<?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>
Sophomore Savannah Noyes led the KU offense with eight kills on a .222 attack percentage. Correa, Brown and senior Megan Hill each added five kills apiece. Freshman Brittany Williams totaled three blocks, a match-best.
Brown also dished 13 assists and freshman Katie Martincich added 11 in the effort. KU hit a season-low .026 in the match while Bama swung at a .318 clip and outblocked the Jayhawks 11.5 to 6.0.
“It was a great opening weekend to give kids their first opportunity in a Division I setting and we had some kids really step up,” head coach Ray Bechard said after his team’s loss. “This was a very competitive tournament with quality teams. I was a little disappointed with how the last match went, but if you look at the whole weekend, we have a lot of positives to look at. We are excited to get home and play on Tuesday.”
The teams exchanged points early in Game One and the Jayhawks took advantage of four Alabama service errors to take a 14-12 lead. A hitting error by Hill tied the match at 16-all and the Crimson Tide answered with a 6-1 run to take a 23-17 lead. Errors late in the game proved costly for the Jayhawks, who committed four in the last five plays (two hitting, one serving, one receiving). KU hit just .057 in the first stanza (10 kills, eight errors) while Bama attacked at a .407 clip (15 kills, four errors).
Bama pulled out a 17-13 lead in Game Two, forcing KU’s second timeout of the stanza. Two Bama kills and a KU ball handling error gave the Tide a seven-point advantage, widening KU’s deficit. The Jayhawks managed just 10 kills (.158) and committed five serving and three reception errors in the game as Bama took a 2-0 lead at the break.
Five blocks brought Bama to a 12-6 lead, taking an edge off the KU hitters. The Jayhawks called their second timeout of the game, down 17-8, but could not catch an offensive momentum. KU totaled 10 kills for the third consecutive game and had 15 hitting errors for a -.122 attack percentage.
The Jayhawks will host UMKC in their home opener Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Horejsi Family Athletics Center.