Hooker paces No. 7 Volleyball to sweep of Cal State Bakersfield
AUSTIN, Texas -- The seventh-ranked Texas Volleyball team used a 16-kill performance by sophomore outside hitter Destinee Hooker to drop Cal State Bakerfield, 3-0 (30-12, 30-20, 30-19) in the Longhorns' home opener Thursday night in the Time Warner Cable Invitational at Gregory Gymnasium. The Longhorns return to action Friday, Sept. 7 when they take on Pepperdine at 6:30 p.m.
Texas (3-2) out-hit Bakersfield (3-6) on the night .330-to-.032, recording 45 kills, highlighted by Hooker's .438 hitting performance and freshman outside hitter Juliann Faucette's 12-kill effort. Senior setter Michelle Moriarty registered her first assist/dig double-double of the season, tallying 34 assists and 10 digs in UT's three-game win.
The Longhorns jumped out to an early 5-1 lead behind back-to-back kills by junior utility player Lauren Paolini and they would never look back. The Roadrunners narrowed the score to 5-4, but the Horns answered quickly with a 9-0 run paced by three kills by senior middle blocker Brandy Magee. Texas dominated from that point on, holding leads as big as 18 points and closing out the game, 30-12.
In game two, Bakersfield played Texas tough, knotting the score at the 14-14 mark. UT answered with two aces by Magee and a 4-0 run to push its lead to 18-14. Texas then rode a 5-0 run, using two Hooker kills to extend the margin to 27-18 late in the game. Hooker eventually closed out the second stanza, adding two more kills and lifting Texas to a 30-20 victory.
Texas trailed early in the third game, but rallied behind a 5-0 run and three Hooker service aces to claim a 10-7 advantage. The Roadrunners countered briefly, however, the Horns snuffed the rally with a 9-0 run that gave UT a 22-13 edge. Faucette added three kills late in the game, and junior defensive specialist Kiley Hall nailed a jump-serve ace to cap the match with a 30-19 game-three win.
Hooker added eight kills, three service aces and two blocks to her performance, while Faucette hit at a .308 clip and chipped in six digs. Paolini tallied nine kills on .294 hitting for the night, and Magee registered seven kills and a .538 attack mark in her error-free effort.
Texas returns to action Friday, Sept. 7 against Pepperdine at the Time Warner Cable Texas Invitational. First serve is set for 6:30 p.m. and a tape delayed broadcast of the contest can be viewed at 10:30 p.m. Friday night.
On the keys of the match: The big key for us tonight was our ability to pass well. It is tough to be a passer at this level and we have several players that have stepped up and done a nice job. We also did a really good job with our sideout game tonight and I felt like we were solid from the service line.
SENIOR MIDDLE BLOCKER Brandy Magee
On playing in front of the home crowd: It's been awhile for me, so there was a lot of emotion. I was really excited to come back and play in front of our fans here at Gregory Gym. They are such great fans and it is always exciting to play in front of them. I think all of us seniors were ready to come out and play well in our final home opener.
SENIOR SETTER Michelle Moriarty
SOPHOMORE OUTSIDE HITTER Destinee Hooker
On her performance: I think I give off a lot of energy on the court and I feel like my team feeds off that energy. We all feed off each other and when one of us is playing well and has a lot of energy we bring each other up."