No. 25 Kentucky Takes Down Tennessee in Straight Sets

  0 Eli Noblitt | October 10th, 2016 | College - Women's Indoor, SEC



The Kentucky Wildcats hosted the Tennessee Volunteers, but were not very gracious to their guests as they swept them (25-16, 25-18, 25-16). The win marked Kentucky’s tenth straight, and its sixth win in the SEC (6-0).

The Wildcats dominated the Lady Volunteers  in every category including kills (45-36), hitting percentage (.333-.139), assists (42-34), aces (4-0) and blocks (12.5-1.0).

Individually, Kentucky was led on offense by Lead Edmond with 14 kills (.407) and Darian Mack with 9 (.571). Mack also led in blocks (2 solo, 3 assisted). Setter Olivia Dailey had an effective day passing with 40 assists.

Tessa Grubbs was a bright spot for the Lady Vols as she registered 10 kills and 5 digs. Erica Treiber was close behind with 8 kills and 3 digs. Sedona Hansen had 32 assists for Tennessee.

Both teams’ next matches are against SEC opponents and will be played at home. Kentucky will return to action on Friday against Arkansas, while Tennessee will play Ole Miss.


Courtesy of Kentucky Athletics:

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The 25th-ranked Kentucky volleyball team continued to roll with another sweep, this one at the hands of visiting Tennessee in a 25-16, 25-18, 25-16 victory. UK has now won 10-consecutive matches for the first time since an 11-match winning streak in 2014.

With the victory, Kentucky improves to 13-4 overall and 6-0 in Southeastern Conference action. Tennessee drops to 11-7 on the season and 1-4 in league play. The Wildcats return to the court with a pair of home matches next weekend. UK takes on Arkansas at 6 p.m. on Friday in Memorial Coliseum before welcoming Ole Miss on Sunday at 1:30.

“I really like our focus and it shows on game day,” UK coach Craig Skinner said. “In practice we’ve been doing a good job of really trying to improve and work on specific things. I was a little worried today that coming out of the break after being up 2-0 that we might let down a little bit, but having the lead didn’t seem to phase them. That type of competitive maturity is very important.”

Kentucky simply dominated all phases of the match in the convincing victory over Tennessee on Sunday in front of 1,949 fans. UK overpowered the Lady Vols in every category including kills (45-36), hitting percentage (.333-.139), assists (42-34), aces (4-0) and blocks (12.5-1.0).

Sophomore setter Olivia Dailey was exceptional once again, distributing the ball to a number of Wildcat attackers to keep the Lady Vols’ defensive effort at bay. Seven UK players had two or more kills on the afternoon. Dailey dished out 40 assists as UK averaged 15 kills a set on a .333 average.

Junior Darian Mack was the most efficient of any Wildcat with nine kills on a career-high and match-high .571 average. It was her most productive match since posting 10 hammers on a .400 clip in a win over Lipscomb.

“Darian really changed the momentum and impacted the left side of the net with 5 blocks and 9 kills,” Skinner said.  “I’m really proud of her effort today. Darian is one of the best blockers from the left side of the net that you’re going to see in the country. She has great instincts and has a great knack for where the ball is going to cross the net. We obviously want to take advantage of that.”

Freshman Lead Edmond topped double-figures for the 11th-consecutive match with a match-high 14 on a .407 average. Junior Emily Franklin had seven kills, while classmate Kaz Brown added six. Sophomore Brooke Morgan and senior Anni Thomasson both chipped in with a trio of kills, while senior Sharay Barnes added a pair of hammers.

Franklin led the defensive charge with six of UK’s 12.5 blocks. Mack was also sensational in this area as she turned back a career-high tying five of her own – including a pair of solo rejections. Brown added four, while Morgan chipped in with three.

Junior Ashley Dusek led the backline defense with a match-high 11 digs. Three other Wildcats contributed a high number of digs with Thomasson, Edmond and Dailey all posting six. Sophomore McKenzie Watson added three and an ace.

Thomasson, like much of the season, was UK’s stalwart from the service line with three aces on the day.


Set 1

Morgan opened the scoring with a crafty kill over the block for the match’s first point. Tennessee would respond with three-straight points of its own, however. A 3-0 run by the Wildcats capped by an ace from Watson allowed UK to grab a 6-3 edge. The lead swelled to a six-point advantage at 12=3-7 following three-consecutive miscues by the Lady Vols forcing the visitors into a timeout. Out of the break, UK had Edmond, Franklin and Morgan in on a triple-block. After the Lady Vols pulled to within five, UK responded with three-consecutive points including a vicious kill from Edmond for a 21-13 edge. It was all the more breathing room the Cats would need en route to a 25-16 opening set victory. The Wildcats had 15 kills on .316 hitting, while limiting Tennessee to 12 kills on a .182 clip. Edmond led five players with multi-kills with four in the frame.

Set 2

Thomasson’s ace got things started in the second stanza. From there the teams would endure a back-and-forth battle until stuff blocks from Mack and Franklin and a solo rejection from Mack lifted UK to an 8-6 lead. The lead grew to 15-11 midway through the frame after UK frustrated the Lady Vols into an attacking error. Franklin converted off a slide to make the lead 18-12 in favor of the home team. Kentucky would cruise to a 2-0 lead into the halftime stretch behind a 25-18 second-set win that was capped by a thundering kill from Brown. UK boasted 15 kills on a .387 clip. Tennessee logged 15 of its own, but on a mere .175 hitting percentage.

Set 3

Franklin jumpstarted the Wildcats with a kill followed by a block with Morgan for an early 2-0 lead. Tennessee would quickly rebound with two points of its own, but it was Franklin once again who snapped the spurt with a kill behind the setter. Mack forced the Lady Vols into an early timeout after pushing UK’s lead to 9-5 following her seventh kill of the match. After allowing the Volts to get back to within three, Kentucky utilized a 4-1 burst for a 14-8 advantage. Mack teamed up with Brown for her fourth block of the set for a seven-point UK lead at 17-10. Sophomore Anna Nyberg put the finishing touches on the win for the Cats with a kill to the back row for a 25-16 final set victory.


11 – Straight matches Lead Edmond has registered double-figure kills

10 – Consecutive wins for the Wildcats

4 – For the fourth time in five matches, setter Olivia Dailey posted 40 or more assists

2 – Career records junior Darian Mack broke (.571 attacking clip and five blocks)

Follow along with the Cats on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, and on the web at

Courtesy of Tennessee Athletics:

LEXINGTON, Ky. — The Tennessee Volunteers finished their stretch of four road matches Sunday with a 3-0 loss (25-16, 25-18, 25-16) to No. 25 Kentucky at Memorial Coliseum.

The Vols (11-7, 1-4 SEC) were led by freshman outside hitter Tessa Grubbs, who finished with 10 kills and five digs. Sophomore middle hitter Erica Treiber added eight kills, hitting .333.

Kentucky (13-4, 6-0) controlled the net the entire match, finishing with 12.5 team blocks compared to one for Tennessee. The Vols hit .139 for the match, their lowest hitting percentage of the season, while Kentucky averaged .333, the highest the Vols have allowed.

Kentucky broke away midway through the first set by winning eight of 10 points at a stretch, capping the run with kills by Leah Edmond and Kaz Brown to go up 16-8. The Vols cut the lead to five points on a Grubbs putaway, but the Wildcats, hitting .316, won the set 25-16.

The Vols led the second set early 6-5, but Kentucky went on another run of winning eight of 10 points to take a 13-8 lead on a kill by Edmond. The Wildcats led the rest of the way, taking the set 25-18.

Coming out of the break, Kentucky broke a 3-3 third set tie by winning six of eight points to go ahead 8-5. The Wildcats led the rest of the way.


  • Tennessee starters: Sedona Hansen, Bri Holmes, Raina Hembry, Erica Treiber, Tessa Grubbs, Kanisha Jimenez and Brooke Schumacher at libero. This is the 11th starting lineup the Vols have used in 18 matches.
  • The Vols concluded their stretch of four road matches. Counting the trip back from Lexington, the Vols traveled more than 2,600 miles for matches at South Carolina, Florida, Troy and Kentucky. That’s approximately the distance it takes to drive across the United States from Miami to San Diego.
  • Freshman setter Sedona Hansen was two digs away from a double-double, finishing with 32 assists and eight digs.


  • The Vols are back home for a pair of matches: Friday against Ole Miss at 7 p.m. and Sunday versus Arkansas at 1:30 p.m.
  • Both matches will be streamed via SEC Network+ and WatchESPN.

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