Garlington Leads Jayhawks to 3-1 Win Over Winthrop
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Senior Karina Garlington led the Jayhawks with a season-high 27 kills on a .458 attack percentage and freshman Kara Wehrs had a career-high 50 assists, as Kansas volleyball defeated Winthrop 3-1 in its first match of the Kansas Invitational, 25-12, 25-21, 27-29 and 25-20.
It was the first time a KU player had 25 or more kills in a match since Garlington did it on September 23 last year against Oklahoma. The Jayhawks improved to 8-1 on the season while the Eagles fell to 2-5. Wehrs also matched her career-high in kills with seven while sophomore Tayler Tolefree added a season-high eight kills, hitting at a .375 clip.
In the first set, junior Allison Mayfield dominated on the offensive end, posting eight kills with only one error for an impressive .438 attack percentage. She also added an ace. As a team, the Jayhawks won six of the first eight points and never trailed in the set. KU won the last nine points of the match and had a stellar .361 hitting efficiency, with 18 kills, a season-high at the time, and only five errors. Wehrs had a team-high .500 attack percentage for the set with four kills on only six attacks. Defensively, the Jayhawks forced Winthrop to a .000 hitting percentage, as the Eagles only managed four kills with four errors for the set.
In the second set, Tolefree hit a perfect 1.000, posting six kills on six attacks. The Jayhawks continued their potent offensive attack with 17 kills and a .324 hitting efficiency in the frame. Neither team led by more than five points with KU eventually taking the set, 25-21.
The third set remained close throughout, as the largest lead for either team was only four points when Winthrop led KU 14-10. The two teams tied at 20 and no team won two consecutive points after that until Winthrop won the match, 29-27. The Jayhawks established a new season-high with 20 kills in the set. Garlington had nine of the kills with only one error to lead the team with a .571 attack percentage for the frame.
In the final set, KU jumped out to an early 8-4 lead but Winthrop fought back, winning five straight points to take a 16-13 lead. Following a Jayhawk timeout, Garlington took over the offensive attack, winning the next seven KU points on her own with six kills and a block. The Eagles stayed close, though, as the two teams tied at 20. Kansas then won the last five points to take the match in four sets. Garlington posted 11 kills with only two errors, hitting at an impressive .500 efficiency in the frame.
The Jayhawks will play again Friday evening (tonight) at 7 p.m. against No. 18 Northern Iowa, which swept Arkansas-Little Rock in the first match of the Kansas Invitational.