No. 2 Volleyball wins 26 West Longhorns Classic with 3-0 sweep of No. 19 San Diego
Aug. 25, 2012
AUSTIN, Texas--Sophomore All-America outside hitter Haley Eckerman had a match-high 14 kills Saturday as the No. 2 Texas Longhorns earned a 3-0 sweep (25-21, 25-19, 25-12) over the No. 19 San Diego Toreros to win the 26 West Longhorns Classic. Eckerman earned Most Valuable Player honors after posting 35 kills and 44.5 points (4.94 pps) with five service aces and 11 blocks on the weekend.
Texas (3-0) improved its nation-leading home win streak to 33 matches. The Longhorns used 12 blocks to frustrate the San Diego (2-1) offense as the Toreros hit .083 in the match, including a negative .133 in the third set (seven kills, 11 errors).
Freshman Nicole Dalton had eight kills while hitting .583 (8-1-12) with 18 assists, one ace, seven digs and two blocks while junior All-America outside hitter Bailey Webster chipped in eight kills while hitting .318 (8-1-22) with three blocks. Khat Bell, Sha'Dare McNeal and Molly McCage posted four blocks each while Sarah Palmer, named as the tournament's Most Outstanding Libero, had an ace with a match-high 16 digs.
Alaysia Brown and Katie Hoekman led the Toreros with seven kills each.
Bell's kill tied it at 4-4 in the first set and started a run of seven straight points for the 10-4 lead. A Texas service error, followed by a hitting error got USD within two at 12-10 before Bell gave another spark as a McCage/ McNeal block pushed the Longhorn lead to five, 15-10. Dalton would factor in late in the set as her kill on the overpass made it 19-14. Amber Tatsch cut the deficit to one at 22-21, but Dalton registered the kill and then knocked down a service ace for set point. Webster then used a solo block on the left side to earn the set for UT.
With a 10-9 lead in the second set, Eckerman tallied back-to-back kills for a three-point UT lead. Sandra Lozic responded with two of her own to tie it at 14-14. Webster snapped a 15-15 tie to start four straight for the Longhorns as San Diego burned its first timeout. After two points by USD, McNeal terminated for the Longhorns and back-to-back kills from Eckerman put Texas ahead by five, 22-17. Bell made it a 2-0 lead in the match with the final kill of the set.
Texas would be in control for the final set, jumping out to a 13-6 lead. Webster started a run of eight straight points with three combined McCage/McNeal blocks for the 21-7 advantage before Eckerman put down back-to-back kills to finish the victory for the Longhorns.
Texas will open Big 12 play on Wednesday (Aug. 29) at West Virginia before traveling to the Nike Big Four Volleyball Classic next weekend to face Florida and host Penn State.
Notes: Nicole Dalton, Sha'Dare McNeal and Bailey Webster were named to the all-tournament team...Dalton recorded 49 assists this weekend while junior setter Hannah Allison had 48 assists...the Longhorns hit .336 on the weekend while holding their opponents to a .080 hitting percentage...Texas had 40 blocks in nine sets this weekend for a 4.44 blocks-per-set average...four Longhorns had 10 or more blocks in three matches this weekend (Dalton, McNeal, Khat Bell and Molly McCage)...with Texas playing at West Virginia on Wednesday, Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott needs one win to record his 200th overall conference win...Elliott currently has 170 conference wins at Texas.
USD 21-19-12 TEXAS 25-25-25