Nov. 8, 2008
AMES, Iowa -- The fourth-ranked Texas Volleyball team used four double-digit kill performances to knock off Iowa State, 3-0, Saturday night at the Hilton Coliseum. The 29-27, 28-26, 25-17 win improved the Longhorns to 19-3 on the year and 12-2 in the Big 12, while the Cyclones dropped to 16-10 overall and 8-7 in league play.
Texas opened the first set on an 8-1 run fueled by three block assists from senior All-America middle blocker Lauren Paolini and junior All-America opposite hitter Ashley Engle. The Cyclones responded immediately with an 8-1 run of their own, knotting the game at nine. The Horns battled back to take a 15-11 lead, but ISU came back to even the tally at 17. Texas and Iowa State traded the next 21 points before an ISU service error and a kill by Engle on consecutive points closed out the frame, 29-27.
In the second set, UT and ISU swapped the first 10 points before the Cyclones built up a 15-10 advantage. The Longhorns closed the gap to two (14-16) and were able to even the score at 20 on a block by Engle and sophomore middle blocker Jennifer Doris. Texas did not reclaim the edge until the 26-25 mark and finally closed out the stanza, 28-26 on two straight kills by junior All-America outside hitter Destinee Hooker and sophomore All-America outside hitter Juliann Faucette.
Texas led 7-3 early in the third set, taking advantage of four Iowa State miscues. The Cyclones put together a 5-1 run to tie the set at nine, but the Longhorns staved off the rally, maintained the lead and stretched the margin to 17-14 on a kill by Engle. The Horns closed out the set on a 7-1 run, that was aided by four ISU errors and capped by a Faucette kill that ended the set, 25-17.
Hooker concluded the match with 13 kills on .393 hitting, while Engle and Paolini connected for 11 kills each and Faucette totaled 10. Hooker equaled her season-best block total of six in the victory and the Longhorns out-blocked the Cyclones 12.0-to-8.0.
Texas returns to action on Wednesday, Nov. 12 when it hosts Texas Tech. First serve is set for 6:30 p.m.
· Texas' win against Iowa State moved the Horns' all-time record against the Cyclones to 25-4 and extended UT's win streak against ISU to 10.
· Junior outside hitter Destinee Hooker's six total blocks equaled her season-high that she posted against Colorado (10/11/08)
· Texas out-hit Iowa State .330-to-.171 in the victory.
HEAD COACH Jerritt Elliott
General statement: I was very proud of our team tonight. Coming in I thought Iowa State was playing very well and they are a very disciplined and well-coached team. Our team showed a lot of guts tonight and I thought we performed well in crunch time. When the score got tight we executed very well, sided-out and gave ourselves a chance to win. We had to go to a bunch of different players in the match. Amber (Roberson) came off the bench and gave Juliann (Faucette) some much needed rest. Our two DS's Kiley Hall and (Sydney) Yogi really helped our ball control when we were struggling early on. It was definitely a team effort. We showed great composure in a very tough environment. I was proud of the way that this group prepared for the match. They had two good days of practice and I saw a different look in their eyes when they got on the bus to go to the arena.
On what areas his team excelled in: I thought we blocked very well tonight. We put up some numbers that we haven't done in awhile. Our serving was better and we didn't miss near as many serves. We were able to get them off the net and as a result our blocking was better. The best thing about the match was how composed and relaxed we were in crunch time. We were down 16-11 in game two and found a way to bounce back.
On his team's ability to get ISU out of system: We had some success to try to eliminate some of their middles. Their middles had been doing a very nice job. We got them off the net enough and that gave us opportunities. We did a lot of great things with regard to mental toughness.
On Paolini and Kocher's connection: We have been spending a lot of time working on that relationship. It is definitely timing and we have been making sure that we get those two back in order. (Lauren) Paolini came in and watched a lot of film and came in early to practice and she did a really nice job of putting the effort in. That is what it takes some time when things aren't going well. That little extra step was the difference in the boost that she gave us.