Top-seeded Volleyball falls to No. 8 UCLA, 3-1 in NCAA Regional finals
Dec. 10, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The top-seeded Texas Volleyball team received a career performance from senior All-America middle blocker Rachael Adams, but came up short as it fell to eighth-seeded UCLA, 3-1 in the NCAA Lexington Regional final, Saturday evening. The 25-19, 22-25, 22-25, 21-25 loss dropped the Horns season mark to 25-5, while the Bruins improved to 28-6 and advanced to the National Semifinals.
Adams equaled a career-high with her 19 kills, hit a team-best .412 and added five total blocks in her final match in burnt orange. Sophomore outside hitter Bailey Webster joined her in double figures with 14 kills on .367 hitting and national freshman of the year candidate Haley Eckerman added 10 kills. Adams ended her Texas career with 20 career postseason matches played to tie the all-time UT record.
Texas called a timeout in the first set, trailing 11-8 and came out of the timeout on a 14-4 run fueled by a three blocks and two kills by Adams to claim a 22-15 lead. Adams tacked on two more kills down the stretch before a UCLA service error lifted UT to a 25-19 set victory.
UCLA jumped out to a fast start in the second frame, pushing its lead to 19-14 on a kill by Kelly Reeves. Texas answered with a 7-2 rally sparked by three Sha'Dare McNeal kills to tie the set at 21, but the Bruins responded with a run of their own, closing out the set on a 4-1 run to notch a 25-22 win.
The Horns fell behind early once again in the third, trailing 13-10 before bouncing back to reclaim the lead at the 15-14 mark on a McNeal kill. Texas kept the tally tight after relinquishing the lead and tied the set at 21 on a kill by Adams. UCLA sealed the stanza with a 4-1 run that captured a 25-22 set win.
In the fourth, Texas grabbed a 10-8 lead on a Webster kill, but UCLA mounted a 12-3 rally to erase the UT lead and forge ahead, 20-13. Following the run, Texas put together a 5-1 run of its own and closed the margin to 21-18 on a solo block by Webster. The Horns narrowed the Bruins' edge to two on a Madelyn Hutson/McNeal block that moved the score to 22-20. Late in the set, Texas' comeback came up short when Rachael Kidder connected for two of her 26 kills to lift UCLA to a 25-21 victory.
Texas concluded the season with a 25-5 record and made its NCAA-best sixth straight Regional final appearance.