Volleyball preview: Kansas State
Nov. 10, 2011
Match 22: No. 8/6 TEXAS (17-4, 10-1 Big 12) vs. Kansas State (18-8, 7-5 Big 12)
Texas holds the No. 6 spot in the most recent Volleyball Magazine Poll (Nov. 8) ... Texas' lone Big 12 foe in the poll is No. 13 Iowa State ... four of UT's non-conference opponents are ranked (No. 9 Penn State, No. 14 Pepperdine, No. 16 Minnesota, No. 18 Florida).
In the current release of the NCAA RPI (Nov. 7), Texas is ranked No. 4 ... the Horns trail No. 1 Illinois, No. 2 Nebraska and No. 3 Iowa State, while Northern Iowa is No. 5.
Texas improved to 10-1 in the Big 12 with its 3-0 victory at Texas Tech on Wednesday night ... freshman outside hitter Haley Eckerman posted a career-high 23 kills and hit a career-best .595, while committing just one attack error on 37 swings and adding two blocks and a service ace to her career night ... sophomore setter Hannah Allison set the Horns to a .396 hitting percentage, posted 39 assists, eight digs and a career-high five kills in the win.
Through Texas' first 21 matches senior middle blocker Rachael Adams is leading the way for the Longhorns ... the All-American ranks No. 1 in the Big 12 with her .385 hitting percentage and fourth in the Big 12 with 1.18 blocks per-set ... she averaged 1.80 blocks per-set at the elite Nike Big Four Classic (Sept. 9-10) and went on to win Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week honors ... Adams currently ranks 20th in the NCAA in hitting percentage.
The Horns are currently riding a 30-match home winning streak against Big 12 foes, which dates back to Nov. 1, 2008.
Texas is currently riding a 25-match home winning streak at Gregory Gym ... the Horns' winning streak dates back to Sept. 4, 2010 ... UT's streak is the third-best in the NCAA, only trailing Cincinnati (48) and Nebraska (34).
After a slow start to her sophomore campaign, opposite hitter Bailey Webster has come on strong for the Horns ... Webster hit .210 and averaged 1.74 kills in UT's first eight matches, but has shined in her last 13 outings, hitting .377 with 3.09 kills per-set.
Senior middle blocker Rachael Adams has benefitted greatly from the return of Sha'Dare McNeal who was missing from the Horns front row in 13 matches after injuring her knee in the season opener ... McNeal's return has allowed Adams to have more one-on-one opportunities and boost her hitting percentage 87 points ... Adams has hit .449 in the seven matches since McNeal's return after hitting .362 in the first 14 matches ... since McNeal returned all of Texas' starting hitters are hitting .292 or better.
In its Big 12 Conference matches, Texas has shined, hitting a league best .320, while limited opponents to the league's second-lowest hitting mark (.168) ... the Horns rank second in the Big 12 with 14.32 kills and 13.43 assists per-set ... senior Rachael Adams ranks first with a .398 attack mark, while sophomore Bailey Webster ranks third with a .366 hitting percentage ... freshman outside hitter Haley Eckerman's 3.67 kills and 4.00 points per-set rank sixth and her .315 attack mark ranks ninth.