KU falls to Iowa State
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas volleyball team suffered its second-straight loss Saturday afternoon at Horejsi Family Athletics Center when Iowa State took the match in straight sets: 16-25, 23-25, 16-25.
Kansas (13-6, 6-2 Big 12) was forced to alter its game plan early when freshman setter Camryn Ennis exited the match in the first set with an injury to her ankle. Iowa State (11-10, 4-4 Big 12) stuck to its defensive approach and used its blocking effort at the net to disrupt the already interrupted Jayhawks’ offense that swung .075 on the day with 22 attacking errors.
The Cyclones used 10.0 blocks at the net and five service aces to put the pressure on both KU’s passing and attacking efforts. The Jayhawks took 93 swings and recorded just 29 kills, while Iowa State took 91 for 35 kills.
Junior outside hitters Jada Burse and Ashley Smith led Kansas with eight kills each, while junior libero Allie Nelson led both teams with 12 digs.
- Kansas dropped its second-straight match for the first time since it lost two in a row during the Kansas Invitational (Sept. 7-8).
- The three-game sweep suffered by the Jayhawks was a first since then-No. 2 Texas won in three sets on Nov. 15, 2017, in Austin.
- The sweep also marks the first time since Nov. 11, 2017, that KU lost in three sets at home (then-No. 23 Baylor).
- The Jayhawks fall to 6-2 in conference play and stand alone in second place in the league standings.
- Iowa State recorded 10.0 blocks compared to KU’s 5.0 blocks. That is the first time Kansas was out-blocked by its opponent since Sep. 1 at then-No. 16 Kentucky (12.5 – 9.0).
- Kansas’ 5.0 blocks were the fewest by a KU team since Nov. 15, 2017 at Texas, when it recorded 3.0.
- The .075 attack percentage by the Jayhawks was their lowest since Oct. 26, 2011 at Iowa State when they swung a .074 mark.
Head coach Ray Bechard on the offense…
“We had to completely change our system with Camryn (Ennis’) injury. We played a team that offensively was playing at a high level. When we could not create opportunities on our first contact – our passing was not good. We can’t sustain anything. There was a lot of up and down on our side and Iowa State was much more steady than we were today.”
Bechard on the blocking efforts…
“When we pass off the net, we become very predictable and we become easier to defend. Iowa State had options and good spacing along the net. When the first eight or nine balls in a row we have to push out to Jada (Burse) or Ashley (Smith), you will have a big block waiting for you. There has been times our outside hitters were able to manage that, but today we ran into a team that was pretty disciplined defensively and got in front of us.”
Bechard on the low attacking percentage…
“We have to have more offensive balance, but I will get back to the point that our first contact hasn’t been very good. We got aced 10 times at K-State and then five here today. We have our setter running 15 to 20 feet off the net. When you do that you can only get the ball to one person. When that happens, your hitting efficiency suffers. A bunch of little things begin to add up to something significant. A lot of little things went wrong today.”
The Kansas volleyball team returns to the road when it travels to Waco, Texas, to start the second half of Big 12 Conference play against the Bears on Saturday, Oct. 27. First serve is slated for 12 p.m.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.