🏐 Jayhawks Take Down Wildcats, 3-1, in Game One of the Dillons Sunflower Showdown
MANHATTAN, Kan. – The Kansas Jayhawks took the first match of the Dillons Sunflower Showdown, 3-1 over Kansas State on Friday evening at Bramlage Coliseum.
The win moves the Jayhawks to 15-11 overall and 7-8 in Big 12 play, while the Wildcats fall to 15-11 overall and 6-9 in conference.
Kansas had 55 kills total and was led by freshman Caroline Bien who had 14. The team hit .254 while holding the Wildcats to just .136. KU also picked up 18 blocks, led by Caroline Crawford with six.
Kansas came out hot in the first set and established a strong lead at 16-6. The Wildcats came roaring back and made it a one-point game at 23-22. However, the Jayhawks regained momentum and won the opening set 25-22. Kansas had 16 kills and hit .220 to open the match.
In the second set, the Jayhawks fell behind early and weren’t able to overtake the Wildcats. Kansas State used four service aces and .324 hitting percentage to edge out the Jayhawks in set two, 25-22.
In what was a back-and-forth match entering the third set, Kansas and Kansas State kept it close in the beginning of the third set.
The Jayhawks were able to build a lead of 11-6 in the third, which forced Kansas State to take a timeout. The Wildcats worked their way back within striking distance and would eventually tie the set at 21-all. The two teams tied again at 23-all, but the Jayhawks finished off the match with a Jenny Mosser kill and forcing a hitting error on Kansas State to secure the 25-23 victory in set three.
Up 2-1 in the match, the Jayhawks went up early in the fourth set and would not look back. The Jayhawks held the lead for the entirety of the set and would go on to win 25-14 and secure the match victory.
The Dillons Sunflower Showdown will continue ton Saturday at 6:30 pm CT, marking the final game of the regular season for both teams. The match will be broadcast on Big 12 Now on ESPN+.