Volleyball Sweeps Rice Friday Afternoon
Nov. 19, 2010
TULSA, Okla. - Tyler Henderson led the way with 16 kills and Elizabeth Kale hit .571 with eight kills to help the 24th-ranked University of Tulsa volleyball team clinch at least a share of the Conference USA title with a 3-0 (25-8, 25-18, 25-23) sweep of Rice Friday afternoon at the Donald W. Reynolds Center.
The Golden Hurricane (28-2, 18-0 C-USA) won its 27th straight match, extending the nation's longest win streak. TU can clinch the C-USA Championship outright with a win Sunday against Houston. Rice fell to 15-15 overall and 10-8 in league play.
TU easily won the first set and cruised in the second set, before having to rally from six points down in the third to win the final frame.
"I was really excited about how we played for the first two sets of the match," Tulsa Head Coach Ed Allen said. "We had some consistency issues, mainly from a ball-control perspective, and had some attacking errors, that allowed them to build a lead in set number three. But I was very pleased with how our kids came back and approached that challenge, and we ultimately ended up winning the third set. We had a great defensive performance. We held them to about a .019 attack percentage, which is certainly well below their average on the season. We hit our (season) average for the match offensively. So, we felt like we did the kinds of things both offensively and defensively that we needed to."
Jordan Clampitt recorded 34 assists and Kellie Culbertson led TU with 10 digs. Diana Silva tallied seven kills, including five crucial kills in the third set, and nine digs. Jessica Adams and Shelbi Pitcher each had seven digs, and Hannah Stout added five kills.
Tulsa hit .286 as a team (42-12-105) with 42 kills, 35 assists, three service aces, 42 digs and 9.0 blocks. Rice hit .019 in the match (30-28-103) with 30 kills, 28 assists, one ace, 48 digs and 4.0 blocks.
"I think we did a great job at the service line. We had four or five kids that really apply pressure back there, and really helped set up our defense. I'm excited about the win. I'm excited about the opportunity ahead of us in playing Houston. It's nice to clinch at least a share of the championship today, and we're looking forward to winning the championship outright on Sunday against Houston."
Tulsa opened the first set with a 5-0 run before Rice called its first timeout, then extended its run to 9-1. The Hurricane then went on an 8-2 run to take a, 17-3, lead. With a, 21-8, lead, TU scored the final four points to win the set, 25-8.
The second set went back and forth most of the way, and the largest lead for either team, until the very end, was three points. The Golden Hurricane led by three twice early on, 8-5, and 9-6. Down, 15-14, the Hurricane scored five straight points to take a, 19-15, lead. TU then outscored Rice, 6-3, to win the set, 25-18.
Rice opened up a, 12-6, lead in the third set, using a 7-1 run. Tulsa pulled within two points at, 14-12, but the Owls pulled away again to an, 18-13, lead. The Golden Hurricane closed the gap to, 20-19, with a 7-1 run, and tied the score at, 22-22. The Owls scored the next point to go up, 23-22, but TU got a kill from Silva, a Rice attack error, and a kill from Hancock to win the set, 25-23.
Sunday's match against Houston will begin at 1 p.m. Live video and live stats will be available on www.TulsaHurricane.com. The match will be broadcast in the Tulsa area on 88.7 FM HD3 KWTU.
For all Tulsa volleyball news and information, visit www.TulsaHurricane.com. Follow Tulsa Athletics on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/TulsaHurricane and Facebook at www.facebook.com/TulsaHurricane. Follow Tulsa Volleyball on twitter (www.twitter.com/TulsaVolleyball) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/TulsaVolleyball).
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