No. 11 Volleyball opens exhibition season with sweep
AUSTIN, Texas -- After a slow start, the 11th-ranked Texas volleyball team overcame opening-season jitters and dominated UT-San Antonio, defeating the Roadrunners, 30-21, 30-16, 30-9, in an exhibition match at Gregory Gym on Friday evening.
Led by Lauren Paolini's nine kills and Leticia Armstrong's eight kills and .500 hitting percentage, the Longhorns also benefited from eight team blocks and 10 service aces in the victory.
In the first game, the two teams played evenly until 15-15 when the Longhorns took off, using multiple kills from Brandy Magee and Dariam Acevedo, and seven errors by the Roadrunners, to close the game on a 15-6 run.
Texas carried its momentum from the first game into the second, opening a 9-1 lead behind two Acevedo aces and a pair of Paolini kills. The Horns continued to maintain control and opened a 10-point lead at 25-15, and closed out the game with a 5-1 run following four errors from UTSA. Neither team connected well at the net, as UT managed a .161 attack efficiency. However, the Longhorns held the Roadrunners to a negative percentage, -.069, using four blocks and five aces to help in the game.
Texas limited UTSA to only four kills in the final game while connecting for 12, and also experimented with a 6-2 offense midway through the game. UT had two blocks, five aces and hit .300 in the game, as Armstrong and Jen Christian each recorded three kills in the final frame. The Horns jumped out to an 11-2 lead before building the advantage to a 25-8 mark. UT closed out the game strong, running off six-straight points.
For the match, Texas held UTSA to just a .023 hitting percentage while connecting for a .250 mark. UT used its sizable height advantage at the net to out-block the Roadrunners, eight to two. The Horns used their entire lineup and every attacking player recorded at least one kill, including newcomers Jennifer Todd (four kills, two blocks), Heather Schreiber (two kills), Paolini (nine kills, four digs, two blocks) and RuthAnn Feist (one kill).
The Longhorns will play their annual Orange & White intrasquad scrimmage on Saturday, Aug. 27, at Gregory Gym. The day will begin at 3:30 p.m. with a kids clinic for children in sixth grade or younger. At 4:30, clinic participants will get a tour of the team's facilities at Gregory, before the scrimmage begins at 5 p.m. A meet and greet with the team, including an autograph session, will take place after the hour-long match.
Texas officially opens its season on Friday, Sept. 2, when the team travels to Notre Dame, Ind., to participate in the Irish Invitational. The Longhorns open with Arizona State at 7 p.m., before taking on host Notre Dame on Saturday, Sept. 3 at 5 p.m. That match will be broadcast by CSTV on a tape-delayed basis on Sunday, Sept. 4 at 5 p.m.