No. 10 Volleyball falls to Nebraska
AUSTIN, Texas -- The 10th-ranked Texas Volleyball team pulled out to a 2-0 lead, but fourth-ranked Nebraska won the next three games and won, 3-2, to snap the Longhorns' nine-match home winning streak at Gregory Gym before a season-high 2,515 fans on Wednesday night in a key Big 12 showdown.
After Texas took games one and two, 30-21 and 33-31, respectively, Nebraska responded with a third-game 30-27 win and a fourth-game 30-23 victory. In the decisive game five, UT went ahead 11-10 and serving, but back-to-back general hitting errors gave Nebraska a lead it didn't relinquish. Texas saved one match point at 14-13 (NU) with a Mira Topic (Kastela Kambelovac, Croatia) kill, but the Huskers came back with a kill and won a long rally when a tip shot on their second match point landed just out of reach of a sprawling Horns defense.
Nebraska (16-1, 10-0 Big 12) entered the match first in the Big 12 standings, one game ahead of Texas (16-2, 8-2 Big 12), and extended its lead to two games with the victory.
"What changed the match for us between the first two games and the last three games was just our increasing number of errors," Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott said. "Nebraska is a very tough team, and they've won the Big 12 so many times for a reason. They are disciplined and well-coached and come in ready to play.
"We were ready for the game, but we just took ourselves out of it later in the match with so many unforced errors, like on our serve or just hitting the ball," Elliott continued.
"The match was an excellent measuring stick for us, especially coming after our loss at Texas A&M last Saturday. We came out prepared and in the right mindset, but we know where we have work to do entering the second-half of the conference season."
Four Longhorns recorded double-figure kills, led by Topic who had 25. She also collected her 12th double-double of the season with 13 digs. Senior Bethany Howden (Austin, Texas) had 19 kills, while sophomore Brandy Magee (Mission Viejo, Calif.) had 12 and freshman Jen Christian (Gilbert, Ariz.) had 11.
Moriarty also collected her third double-double of the season with a career-high 63 assists in addition to her 12 digs.
For Nebraska, Jennifer Saleaumua had a team-high 19 kills, while Sarah Pavan had 18 and Melissa Elmer and Christian Houghtelling each added 12.
In addition to Topic's 13 digs, sophomore Dariam Acevedo (Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico) also had 13, freshman Michelle Moriarty had a career-high 12 and freshman Alyson Jennings (Costa Mesa, Calif.) had 11. NU's Amanda McCormick had a match-high 21 digs, while Saleaumua and Dani Busboom each had 11.
Nebraska out-blocked Texas, 15.0 to 11.0, led by Tracy Stalls, who had a match-high eight. For Texas, Howden added five.
The match between the two teams was the second-straight five-game affair, as UT pushed Nebraska to five in Lincoln last season. On Nov. 12, the two teams traded games before the Huskers won the fifth, 15-10.
Texas begins the second half of Big 12 play on Saturday, Oct. 23, when they host No. 18 Kansas State at 3 p.m. at Gregory Gym. On Oct. 9, UT - then ranked 11th - defeated the then-No. 16 Wildcats in Manhattan, 3-0.