- No. 11 Kentucky def. LSU 3-0 (25-22, 25-16, 25-13)
- Kentucky moves to 11-2, 2-0 SEC; LSU falls to 10-3, 1-1 SEC
- Lexington, Kentucky
- Attendance: 1,674
- Box Score
LEXINGTON, Ky. – No. 11 Kentucky hit at a .524 clip as a team in a home sweep of LSU to move to 2-0 in SEC play.
The Wildcats’ amazing hitting effort including a .789 clip in Set 3, with 15 team kills and no errors in 19 swings.
LSU hit .306 for the match, but trailed Kentucky in kills (49-37), aces (9-2) and blocks (7-4).
Sophomore outside hitter Leah Edmond and freshman outside Avery Skinner notched 10 kills apiece, while senior middle blocker Kaz Brown and senior outside Darian Mack each chipped in nine. Brown was 9-for-11 with no errors for a team-leading .818 hitting effort, while all all eight of the players with a kill hit at a .368 clip or better. Edmond and senior middle Emily Franklin put up four blocks apiece, while Edmond and freshman setter Madison Lilley chalked up three aces each. Senior libero Ashley Dusek notched 10 digs to pace the defense.
Freshman middle Taylor Bannister put down nine kills, while junior middle Olivia Beyer (8) and senior outside Gina Tillis (6) followed for LSU. Tillis also pulled up a ateam-best seven digs, while Bannister and senior middle Khourtni Fears put up two blocks apiece.
Both teams were efficient offensively in Set 1, each hitting at a .452 clip with just three errors. Kentucky led by four midway through at 11-7 as Brown downed three kills and three players served up aces. LSU caught up at 12 witha 3-0 run, including an Anna Zwiebel ace. The teams tied at 15, 16 and 20, but the Wildcats capped the set with a 5-2 run. A Mack putaway sealed the 25-22 win.
Kentucky scored eight of the first 10 points in Set 2, including three straight kills by Edmond. LSU narrowed the gap to three at 9-6, but that seemed to spark the Wildcats, who rattled off 12 of the next 15 points to vault ahead 21-9. Six players tallied kills in the stretch and two added aces. The Tigers fought back with a 7-2 run, but that only cut the margin to seven at 23-16. Two blocks and a kill by Bannister aided the rally. Kentucky stopped any LSU thoughts of a further comeback with a stuff by Brown and Edmond and a kill by Lilley.
It was 11-5 in favor of UK in Set 3 as Brown and Edmond accounted for two kills and two blocks apiece. The Wildcats raised the advantage to 11 at 20-9 with an 8-2 run, including kills by four players and an ace by Franklin. LSU scored three of the next five, but couldn’t hold off Kentucky, which wrapped up the sweep iwth a 3-1 run, including kills by Anna Nyberg and Franklin.
Courtesy: Kentucky Athletics
Behind one of the best serving performances of the season the No. 10 Kentucky volleyball program rolled to a 3-0 (25-22, 25-16, 25-13) sweep of visiting LSU on Sunday. UK racked up nine aces which led to a balanced offensive attack in the win.
Kentucky improves to 11-2 on the year and 2-0 in Southeastern Conference action. LSU falls to 10-3 on the season and 1-1 in league play. Kentucky will have a week off before traveling to Mississippi State on Oct. 1 at 2:30 p.m. ET.
“I’m pleased we sustained it throughout the match,” head coach Craig Skinner said. “Hitting that type of number throughout an entire match is good. Zero hitting errors in the third set is an impressive stat, so a lot of credit to Madison (Lilley) for distributing the ball to the right people at the right time and credit our hitter for hitting the right shots.”
Freshman Madison Lilley and sophomore Leah Edmond both tallied three aces in the win, while senior Emily Franklin chipped in with a pair. Junior McKenzie Watson was the fourth player to register an ace in the victory.
Lilley directed UK’s offense to the tune of 49 kills on .524 hitting – just off its season-high of .548 which it achieved against Loyola (Chicago) earlier this month. She had a pair of kills and five digs. Balance was the key to UK’s victory as eight different players logged at least one kill.
Freshman Avery Skinner and Edmond both had a match-high 10 kills. Seniors Kaz Brown and Darian Mack both contributed nine. It was one off of Mack’s season high. Brown hit a blistering .818, easily the best hitting percentage of her career with at least 10 attempts. Franklin added five kills on a .444 attacking clip, while junior Anna Nyberg had three and freshman Jordan Fry chipped in with one.
“I think we were really efficient behind the setter,” Brown said. “That helped a lot. The connection with Madison and I is getting better every time we play and that’s a big factor. We were passing really well, so I have to give a lot of credit to our back row players because when they pass the ball well, we have every option and our offense is efficient. They did an awesome job today.”
UK won the battle at the net defensively with a 7-3 advantage in blocks. Franklin and Edmond paced that category with four rejections a piece. Brown and Mack added three. Senior Ashley Dusek once again led the backline defensive effort with a match-high 10 digs. Edmond contributed eight, while Lilley had five. Freshman Gabby Curry and Watson both tallied three apiece.
Kentucky earned the first two points of the set with a Lilley ace and a Skinner kill. LSU tied the match at 2-2. UK answered with kills from Mack and Edmond, both assisted by Lilley, to go up 4-2. Kentucky got up 6-3 after another ace, this one from Franklin. After LSU tied the frame at 7-7, the Wildcats went on a four-point run to go up 11-7. LSU was able to tie the set at 12-12. Neither team could grab a significant advantage until the Cats went up 18-16 after a service error and a ball handing error. LSU was able to tie the frame at 20-20, but UK gained a three-point lead at 24-21 on an Edmond kill. Mack clinched the set victory at 25-22.
UK won the first two points of the set with kills from Skinner and Mack. After LSU scored on a kill of its own, UK got two more after a Skinner termination and a block from the Franklin-Edmond duo. Kentucky went on a five-point run, capped by three straight Edmond hammers to take an 8-2 advantage. LSU got the lead down to 9-6, before three straight points forced the Tigers to call timeout. The Cats went on a 7-2 run, capped by a Big Blue block from Mack and Franklin, to go up 19-8. LSU was able to cut the lead to 23-16, but Kentucky won the frame on a block from Brown and Edmond and a Lilley kill, 25-16.
A stuff started the set for the Cats by Franklin and Mack. LSU took a 2-1 and 3-2 advantage, but UK would roll to a sweep sparked by a service error from the Tigers to knot things at three. UK went up 5-4 after a Mack hammer and would not give up the lead. Edmond’s ace forced an LSU timeout at 10-5. Out of the break, Edmond put up a kill to take an 11-5 advantage. The Tigers called timeout at 17-9, and UK got up 22-10 after an ace from Watson.
Courtesy: LSU Athletics
The LSU volleyball team fell to No. 10 ranked Kentucky in straight sets Sunday afternoon in Memorial Coliseum. The Tigers are now 10-3 on the year and 1-1 in SEC action. Kentucky improves to 11-2 on the season and 2-0 in league play.
The Tigers fell to the Wildcats by scores of 25-22, 25-16 and 25-13. Taylor Bannister led the way with nine kills, while Olivia Beyer finished with eight. Anna Zwiebel registered 26 assists to go along with four kills. Gina Tillis tallied a team-high seven digs.
Fran’s Final Thoughts
“Our offense was good and I thought Anna [Zwiebel] set a very good match. The question and the problem was our defense. We got aced nine times and I don’t think I have had a team do that before. We have to credit Kentucky’s serving, but that is something we can control. I was proud of our effort in the first set and half and then I was disappointed in our defense. Our blocking and back row defense wasn’t there today.”
LSU fought through a tight first set as there were six ties and both teams hit .452. Khourtni Fears tied the game up 2-2 with a solo block and the set pushed to 7-7 after a kill from Olivia Beyer and an attack error from Kentucky. The Wildcats went on a 3-0 run to force an LSU timeout. But the Tigers worked their way back, tying the set up 12-12 on an Anna Zwiebel ace and a Fears kill. The set was even again at 16-16 after a 3-1 LSU run. A solo block from Toni Rodriguez evened things up once more at 20-20, but a 5-2 run for the Wildcats gave them set one, 25-22.
LSU struggled to get things going in the second set as the Tigers trailed Kentucky early 4-1. The Wildcats pushed to an 8-2 lead but the Tigers fought back, going on a 4-1 run to cut the Wildcats’ lead to 9-6. Kentucky extended its lead to 12-6, forcing LSU to a timeout. The Tigers took their second timeout of the set after the Wildcats went up 17-8. Following the timeout, the Tigers went on a 7-3 run to finish out the set, but it wasn’t enough as Kentucky took set two, 25-16.
The Tigers started off strong in the third set, taking their first lead in a set on a kill from Fears and an ace from Cianciulli. But a 6-1 run for the Wildcats gave Kentucky a 10-5 lead and the Tigers took a timeout. The Wildcats extended their lead to 17-8 forcing LSU to its final timeout of the set. The Tigers would score just five more points in the set, falling to the Wildcats, 25-13.
LSU continues SEC action on the road, traveling to South Carolina on Friday, September 29 at 6 p.m. CT and No. 3 ranked Florida on Sunday, October 1 at 2 p.m. CT. Both matches will be available live on SEC Network.
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