Kansas sweeps UNC Greensboro, 3-0
LAWRENCE, Kan. — The Kansas volleyball team defeated the UNC Greensboro in straight sets on Friday evening inside Horejsi Family Athletics Center, 3-0 (25-15, 25-23, 25,19).
The Jayhawks (5-4) held the Spartans (6-5) to a .000 hitting percentage behind a team effort of 13 blocks and 45 digs. Offensively, the Jayhawks were fueled by a balanced trio of Jayhawks with seven kills each — juniors Jada Burse, Ashley Smith and Mmachi Nwoke, who added a team-high six blocks.
Kansas jumped out to a commanding 17-10 lead in the first set after a 7-0 run provided separation from the Spartans. Freshman middle blocker Rachel Langs helped lift KU with four blocks in the first set alone. Smith and Nwoke combined for a block on set-point to give KU a 25-15 decision. KU held UNCG to a -.107 hitting clip in the first set.
The Jayhawks and Spartans battled back and forth during a second set that ended with a 12-5 run for the Jayhawks. With KU training, 18-13, a six-point unanswered KU scoring run negated the Spartans’ lead before taking the second set, 25-23.
Kansas jumped out to a 6-2 lead in the third set before wrapping up its second sweep of the season with a 25-19 third-set win. Burse and Nwoke helped close the match, notching four kills each. Freshman setter Camryn Ennis helped orchestrate the offense to a .333 third-set hitting percentage, while recording 10 of her 21 total assists in the final set.
Kansas and UNCG were originally scheduled to play in North Carolina this weekend, but after the devastating implications of Hurricane Florence, the match was rescheduled and relocated to take place in Lawrence.
Kansas head coach Ray Bechard
On the win over UNC Greensboro …
“We had good balance with three players with seven kills — we just didn’t hit for as high a number we wanted to. We can spread it around though — I do like our balance offensively.
On KU’s defense …
“We had had 45 digs and 13 blocks — that’s a good combination in three sets. We thought there would be a lot of volume from UNCG’s pin-to-pin hitters, so we felt like if we were organized against that we’d be in good shape.”
- Freshman Camryn Ennis recorded 21 assists and 14 digs for her fifth double-double of the season, including her second in a three-set match. Ennis has a double-double in five of the seven matches she has played in this season.
- Junior Allie Nelson started as KU’s libero for the third time this season.
- Friday was the first all-time meeting between Kansas and UNC Greensboro.
- Friday evening’s announced attendance was 1,167, which ended a streak of 27-straight matches with a sellout crowd inside Horejsi Family Athletics Center (capacity 1,302).
Kansas and UNC Greensboro complete a two-match series on Saturday evening inside Horejsi Family Athletics Center. First serve is set for 6 p.m. on ESPN+.
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