Volleyball sweeps Texas A&M and State Farm Lone Star Showdown points
AUSTIN, Texas -- Four Texas volleyball players recorded double figure kills as the 14th-ranked Longhorns defeated Texas A&M 30-16, 30-28, 30-23 to earn a season sweep of the Aggies for the first time since 1996.
With the victory, Texas (15-3, 10-2 Big 12) added another ½ point to UT's season total in the State Farm Lone Star Showdown standings, which now stands at 2.0 to 0 over Texas A&M (9-11, 2-9 Big 12).
Dariam Acevedo had a team-high 13 kills to lead the four UT players in double figures. Jen Christian added 12 to go with her eight aces with a career-best four block solos. Leticia Armstrong also had 12 kills to go with her match-high six blocks. Brandy Magee rounded out the foursome with 11 kills and three blocks.
Texas dominated at the net, out-blocking TAMU 13.0 to 3.0. UT also out-hit the Aggies, .313 to .168. At the service line, Texas had 10 aces to A&M's one, paced by Christian's eight, which tied the second-best single-match mark in UT history.
"Once we got in our offensive rhythm, I thought we did a great job of taking care of the ball and we served tremendously well," Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott said.
A&M's Laura Jones led all players with 14 kills, and in the process became the Aggies' career leader in kills. She recorded her 13th double-double when she added a match-high 12 digs. Lindsey Yon also reached double figures in kills for the Aggies with 10.
The victory also pushed UT's home record in 2005 to 6-0 as the Horns have won their last 13 home matches.
Tied at 4-4 in game one, UT used a 7-0 run behind Christian's serving - including five aces - to move ahead for good. The closest the Aggies got was four points before Texas pushed its advantage to 10 points at 22-12. UT had a pair of blocks down the stretch to secure game one and take a 1-0 lead.
A&M came out stronger in game two and after a 15-15 tie, took their first lead on a Kari Kelley kill. The teams played through nine more ties before A&M went ahead at 26-25 and then took a two-point lead on a Kendra Felder kill. Magee came out of a time out to pull UT within one with a kill, but UT then went on a 4-1 run to close out the game and take a 2-0 lead into the intermission.
"Game two could have gone either way and it was a battle to go up 2-0. When you go up 2-0 at home, it's a big advantage that we wanted to get," Elliott said.
Texas fell back quickly in game three as TAMU went ahead by two points three different times, but at 6-4 A&M, Michelle Moriarty had a kill and she and Armstrong combined on a block to tie the score. From there, Christian added another ace to put UT ahead. Though Texas A&M took another lead - by as many as two points, an Aggie error while holding a 12-11 lead tied the score and then a Christian block put UT ahead for good. That block sparked a 5-0 UT run as the Horns took a 17-12 lead. Texas went ahead by as many as nine points before Armstrong and Lauren Paolini combined on a match-winning block.
"We've been able to do that (battle for wins) a lot lately and when we keep fighting when the game is on the line, they have been pretty successful," Elliott said. "I have been real pleased with our team's growth this year."
The crowd of 3,233 fans was the seventh-largest in Gregory Gym history, and the 15th largest home crowd ever.
With a 2.0 to 0 lead in the Lone Star State Farm Showdown, Texas will next look to add to its point totals at the 2005 Big 12 Cross Country Championships where the team with the highest finish - both men and women - will each add one point to their respective teams' overall standings.
The Longhorns return to action on Saturday, Oct. 29, when they travel to Lawrence, Kan., to take on Kansas in a 7 p.m. match. UT will be looking to win it's fourth-straight match against the Jayhawks.