LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech volleyball recorded a pair of straight-set wins to open its 2018 campaign, taking down Northwestern State and North Dakota on Friday in front of 1,135 fans at United Supermarkets Arena.
Tech defeated the Lady Demons 3-0 (25-21, 25-22, 25-16) in the opener before a dominant 3-0 (25-12, 25-19, 25-19) victory over the Fighting Hawks to close the first of two days in the Red Raider Classic. Rice, who the Red Raiders face Saturday, also went 2-0 Friday.
All nine of Tech's available newcomers saw action on the day as the Red Raiders used an improved block to stymie their opponents and run away with both matches. Tech recorded 8.0 total blocks against the Lady Demons, holding them to .168 hitting. It followed that by posting 6.0 blocks against the Fighting Hawks, limiting them to a .061 clip, which ranks second best in the Graystone era.
Junior Emily Hill led the Red Raiders with a match-high 15 kills against Northwestern State. She hit .308 for the match and added eight more kills in the nightcap. Her service game was also on point, connecting on two aces in the opener before adding a career-high five more against North Dakota.
Fellow junior Chandler Atwood, who sat out the opener, made her season debut against the Fighting Hawks and led the charge with 12 kills on .300 hitting. Sophomore Allison White also made her debut against North Dakota and helped set the tone with three blocks in the opening set.
The Red Raiders started three newcomers in their season debut, with three more receiving action throughout the match. Freshman middle Jessica Langridge tallied the season's first kill and finished with four for the match. She committed just one error in her six swings for a .500 hitting percentage. The Flower Mound, Texas, was also one of three Red Raiders to post three blocks or more.
Freshman Brooke Kanas and redshirt freshman Andrea Janss also received starts. Kanas finished third on the team with six kills on 13 attacks, while Janss scored three kills and two blocks.
In game two, White and Atwood powered Tech to a quick first set in which Tech led from the opening point. In the second set, a 5-0 run midway through the frame helped Tech stretch out to a 15-7 lead. A pair of aces from hill made it 18-9, allowing Tech to rotate in its young depth. Another 5-0 run in the third with junior Kylie Rittimann on serve allowed Tech to take a 13-6 lead and cruise to the win.
Seniors Katy Keenan and Missy Owens provided solid play throughout the day. Keenan totaled 12 kills on a .435 hitting percentage with six blocks on the day. Owens, an All-Big 12 Preseason selection, totaled 55 assists for the day with 10 kills, five blocks and an ace.
The Red Raiders Classic concludes on Saturday as Texas Tech faces former Southwest Conference foe Rice. First serve is set for 12 p.m. on TexasTech.TV.
The Red Raiders improve to 9-0 at the Red Raider Classic under Graystone
The victory against Northwestern State was win No. 30 for Graystone at Tech.
Nine Red Raiders received their first action on the court, including Brooke Kanas, Andrea Janss, Alex Kirby, Katy Northcut, Kiari Gier, Jessica Langridge, Hannah Allison, Haley Killinger and Audrey Smith
The Red Raiders improve to 30-14 all-time in season openers and 37-7 all-time in home openers.
Graystone improves to 16-3 all-time in season openers.
Tech improves to 4-0 all-time against Northwestern State
Tech improves to 2-0 all-time against North Dakota