Texas Tech Makes NIVC Finals Behind 19 Atwood Kills

  0 Wendy Mayer | December 07th, 2017 | Big 12, College - Women's Indoor, News


  • Texas Tech def. TCU 3-1 (23-25, 25-17, 26-24, 25-15)
  • Texas Tech moves to 19-14; TCU ends the season at 15-17
  • Texas Tech moves on to NIVC Finals
  • Fort Worth, Texas
  • Box Score


FORT WORTH, Texas – After dropping the first set, Texas Tech charged back to win three in a row, more than doubling TCU’s hitting percentage the rest of the way.

For the match, the Red Raiders outdid TCU in hitting percentage (.202 to .105), kills (58-47) and blocks (13-11). The Horned Frogs outserved Texas Tech 2-1.

Sophomore outside hitter Chandler Atwood downed a match-high 19 kills for Tech, while sophomore outside Emily Hill followed with 12 and redshirt junior setter Missy Owens and junior middle Katy Keenan added nine apiece. Owens hit at a team-best .353 clip and put up six blocks, while Keenan registered seven stuffs. Redshirt senior libero Kate Klepetka pulled up a match-high 32 digs.

Junior outside Lexi MacLean and junior middle Anna Walsh posted 13 kills apiece for TCU. MacLean rounded out a double-double with a team-best 23 digs and an ace. Freshman middle Sarah Swanson notched a team-high six blocks, while Walsh added five stuffs. Behind MacLean, freshman libero Dani Dennison (22) and senior defensive specialist Kayla Scheevel (15) also managed double-digit dig tallies.

The teams tied 12 times in Set 1, last at 22-all. TCU stole away the win with two hitting errors and a final kill by Abigail Buckingham. Texas Tech owned the biggest lead of the stanza at 9-5, while TCU never led by more than one until the final two points.

After falling behind 13-10 in Set 2, Texas Tech rallied with seven of the next nine points, three on TCU errors, to go up 17-15. The Red Raiders never looked back from there, finishing off the set with an 8-2 run, including the last seven points, all on kills. Atwood put down four in the stretch, including the final three.

Texas Tech overcame four TCU set-point tries in Set 3, scoring six straight to grab the 26-24 win. Atwood notched a kill and three blocks in the final Red Raider rally. Tech built a 12-8 advantage, but saw it fade away into a 13-12 deficit as Walsh turned in two blocks and a kill. After a tie at 18, the Horned Frogs pulled away with a 6-2 run. Two MacLean kills and a kill and a block by Lamprini Konstantinidou gave TCU the 24-20 edge, before the final Red Raider push.

The Red Raiders scored seven straight points, with kills by four different players, to kick off Set 4. Texas Tech boosted the lead to 10 at 15-5 with three putaways by Hill and two by Atwood. A trio of Texas Tech miscues pulled TCU within six at 17-11. Up seven at 21-14, two Atwood kills and a hitting error put the Red Raiders on the hill at 24-14. A block kept the match going, before Owens capped the four-set win.



Courtesy: Texas Tech Athletics

Texas Tech volleyball dug out of an early hole and used a big run through the third and fourth sets to capture a hard-fought 3-1 victory over TCU Thursday at TCU’s Recreation Center and advance to the finals of the National Invitational Volleyball Championship.

Behind big performances from senior Kate Klepetka and sophomore Chandler Atwood, the Red Raiders (19-14, 4-12) saved four set points in the third, rallying with a 6-0 run to take the set and a 2-1 lead. They expanded the run to 13-0 with the first seven points of the fourth on their way to a 23-25, 25-17, 26-24, 25-15 victory and improve to 3-0 against TCU this season.

Texas Tech heads to the NIVC Finals where it will play the winner of Ole Miss and West Virginia, who play their semifinal match Saturday at 4:30 p.m. in Oxford, Miss. The championship match will take place Tuesday, Dec. 12, at 6 p.m. CT at either West Virginia or Ole Miss.

“That was one of the most fun matches we have had in a long time,” head coach Tony Graystone said. “To play a team that we know so well, that’s a rival and conference opponent we’ve seen three times – and they started out hot. We were down 13-10 in the second set, and I called timeout and really got on them. I’m so proud of how they responded. To come back and win that third set – that’s not supposed to happen. You’re trying to hang on and go one at a time. Kate was serving, and Chandler put up a great block. It just worked out for us.”

Atwood racked up a match-high 19 kills, including nine in the second set and six in the fourth. The Allen, Texas, native was involved in four points during Tech’s 6-0 rally in the third with a kill and two block assists and a solo block.

Fellow sophomore Emily Hill added 12 and finished with 15 digs for her 14th double-double of the season. Middle blocker Katy Keenan and setter Missy Owens chipped in nine kills each.

While Tech had one of its best blocking matches of the season, Klepetka was the star defensively, matching a season-high with 32 digs. Freshman Emerson Solano contributed a career-high 14 digs to go with Hill’s 15.

With 13 blocks on the night, Tech matched its season high and outblocked the Frogs 13.0 to 11.0. Keenan matched her career high with seven on the night, while Owens posted a career-high with six.

Tech finished with 58 team kills to TCU’s 47, outhitting the Horned Frogs .202 to .105. The Red Raiders are hitting .286 through its four-match run in the NIVC while holding opponents to .167 hitting. Key in the offensive uptick are Atwood and Hill, who have recorded 4.57 and 4.50 kills per set, respectively.

TCU is the first Big 12 team eliminated from the tournament as all three Big 12 teams in the field reached the semifinals. The Horned Frogs, who were led by 13 kills apiece from Anna Walsh and Lexi MacLean, finish the season at 15-17 overall.

In the first set, Tech led by four early on at 9-5, forcing a TCU timeout. From there, the set tightened with neither side able to gain a comfortable lead. TCU closed on a 4-1 run thank to three hitting errors from Tech, gaining the 1-0 advantage.

Tech evened the match in the second behind the arm of Atwood. The Allen, Texas, native posted nine kills in the frame, fueling a 7-0 run to close out the frame. After hitting just .114 in the first, Tech’s offense came to life with a .311 clip in the second stanza.

TCU seemed in control of the third set, holding set point at 24-20. The Red Raiders, however, stormed back as Atwood was involved in a kill and then two blocks to make it 24-23. After another Tech block gave Tech set point, Keenan capped off the rally with a slide kill to give Tech the 2-1 advantage.

The Red Raiders carried that momentum into the fourth, scoring the first seven points of the frame for a combined 13-0 run spanning the third and fourth sets. Atwood tallied six more kills in the stanza, matching TCU’s team total of six as Tech cruised to the win.


With the win, Texas Tech has secured its most win sin a season since 2000.
Texas Tech won all three meetings with the Horned Frogs in 2017, improving to 9-9 all-time against TCU.
With four wins in the NIVC, Tech is now 7-8 overall in postseason history.
Sophomores Chandler Atwood and Emily Hill have been in double figures in every match of the NIVC.
Klepetka’s 32 digs matched the most in a match by a Red Raider this season and was seven more than the previous best in a four-set match.
Atwood led the team in kills for the 13th time, second most on the team behind Hill.
Tech’s 13.0 team blocks were its most since recording the same number against South Carolina on Sept. 16.
Atwood’s 19 kills matched the fourth-highest total for a Red Raider this season.

Texas Tech advances to the NIVC Finals on Tuesday, Dec. 12, at 6 p.m. CT on ESPN3. The Red Raiders will travel to play the winner of West Virginia and Ole Miss. The Mountaineers and Rebels play their semifinal match on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. CT in Oxford, Miss. As always, be sure to follow @TexasTechVB on Twitter for live updates and check out www.TexasTech.com for everything Red Raider volleyball.


Courtesy: TCU Athletics

Despite taking the opening set, the TCU volleyball team could not finish out the match as Texas Tech came back to take a 3-1 (23-25, 25-17, 26-24, 25-15) victory on Thursday night in the National Invitational Volleyball Championship (NIVC) Semifinals at The Rickel inside the University Recreation Center.

In a very defensive match filled with long rallies, the Horned Frogs (15-17) used a late surge against the Red Raiders (19-14) to take the opening set, but late runs in the second set went Texas Tech’s way as they evened up the match at 1-1. With TCU up 24-20 in the third set, the Red Raiders did not back down as they went on a 6-0 run to take the set and a 2-1 lead in the match. Texas Tech then used the momentum to run out to an early lead in the fourth and never look back as they took the victory in four sets.

Anna Walsh and Lexi MacLean led TCU offensively with 13 kills each, while three players picked up double-digit digs in the match. MacLean led the way with 23 digs to complete her third double-double of the season with Dani Dennison good for 22 digs and Kayla Scheevel picking up 15 digs. As a team, the Frogs were good for 11.0 blocks with Sarah Swanson leading the way with 6.0 in the match.

Stat of the Match
4 – TCU had at least three players pick up double-digit digs for the fourth time this season and second time in NIVC action.

Quotes of the Match
TCU Director of Volleyball Jill Kramer
Opening Statement
“This was not the way we wanted to end our season for sure, but I think our team made a great run here at the end of the NIVC and played really hard. We played our best volleyball at this point in the season which is what you want. I would like to congratulate Texas Tech. They played really great defense tonight. People always talk about the way you play defense is what wins championships and things like that. I am always impressed with their defense but they played really well tonight. It was hard for us to find a kill. I also want to thank our seniors for everything they have given to our program. I think they have given a whole lot and we can’t thank them enough for it. They have been great leaders for this young team and they have done a great job of continuing to battle in postseason.”

-TCU finished the 2017 season with a 15-17 record overall this season with the loss to Texas Tech in the NIVC Semifinals
-With the win by the Red Raiders, Texas Tech gets win No. 9 in the overall series record and evens up the series with TCU at 9-9
-The Frogs are now 5-4 in postseason play as a program
Anna Walsh recorded double-digit kills for a team-best 17th time this season with 13 kills in the match
Lexi MacLean put down double-digit kills for the 10th time in 2017
-Lamprini Konstantinidou led the team in assists for the 23rd time this season with 26 assists in the match
-MacLean led the team in digs for the first time this season and recorded 20+ digs for the first time in her career with 23 against Texas Tech
Dani Dennison also picked up 20+ digs with 22 in the match to mark her 28th double-digit dig match and ninth time recording 20+ digs
Sarah Swanson led the team in blocking for the 16 th time in 2017 with 6.0 in the match
-As a team, TCU recorded double-digit blocks for the eighth time this season and second time in the last three matches

Leave a Reply


About Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer has worked in athletics media relations for the last 20 years. The Northwest Missouri State alumna is currently senior writer for Volleymob.com after spending the last 15 years with Purdue athletics.

Read More »

Don't want to miss anything?

Subscribe to our newsletter and receive our latest updates!