Jayhawks Sweep Kangaroos in Home Opener
Aug. 29, 2006
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
Five Jayhawks totaled nine or more kills as the University of Kansas defeated UMKC, 3-0, Tuesday night in its home opener at the Horejsi Family Athletics Center. With the 30-21, 30-18, 30-16 victory over the Kangaroos (0-4), the Jayhawks improved to 3-1 on the season.
Junior Emily Brown had a rare triple-double — a match-best 12 kills and 10 digs as well as 10 assists — to lead KU. Senior Megan Hill had 10 kills on an impressive .556 hitting efficiency while senior Jana Correa (.421 hitting efficiency), freshman Brittany Williams (.375) and sophomore Savannah Noyes (.429) each added nine kills in the win.
Sophomore Katie Martincich dished a match-high and season-best 36 assists and senior Jamie Mathewson added nine digs to round out the defense. Despite 17 service errors by the Jayhawks, Correa had three of KU’s four aces in the match.
As a team, KU posted a .418 attack percentage and totaled 49 assists in the win. The Kangaroos were held to a -.042 clip, notching 22 kills and 26 errors on 96 attacks, and managed just 21 assists.
“Once we squared away one skill, serving, we played very well tonight,” KU head coach Ray Bechard said. “When we pass and release the ball well to start the game, it becomes contagious and that is probably what happened with our serving. The home crowd was great. We only have 13 matches here this year so we wanted to come out and show these people how hard we play and the top level that we are going to play at all year. I am happy with the win, we got all 15 players in and now we are excited about the trip to Temple [University] this weekend.”
Despite a shaky start, the Jayhawks took a 18-14 lead in Game One after a 5-1 run. The KU offense picked up and closed the stanza with an 11-3 run, holding UMKC to a -.125 attack percentage (six kills, nine errors, 24 attempts) in the game.
The Kangaroos kept Game Two under control, closing a gap with four unanswered points, 16-13. The Jayhawks responded with a 7-1 run to take a 23-14 lead and finished the game with a remarkable .469 hitting efficiency — 16 kills and just one error on 32 attempts. The Jayhawks’ 14-point advantage to close Game Three was their largest of the match.
KU hits the road again this weekend for the Temple Classic in Philadelphia. The Jayhawks face the Owls Friday at 6 p.m. and Maine (9 a.m.) and Rutgers (2 p.m.) on Saturday.