LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech volleyball put together a strong effort in its regular season home finale before falling to No. 5 Texas, 3-0 (25-21, 25-21, 25-18) Wednesday night in front of 1,587 fans on Senior Night at United Supermarkets Arena.
The Red Raiders (17-12, 6-9) went toe-to-toe with the Big 12 Champions through all three frames, trailing by slim margins of 19-17 in the first, 21-20 in the second and 20-18 in the third. The Longhorns (19-4, 14-1), however, were able to close out each set with their strong offensive attack that finished the night hitting .333.
"I thought we played good volleyball tonight," head coach Tony Graystone said. "Really happy with how our offense got around their block. Emily (Hill) was ridiculous tonight. She was maybe playing her best ball of the year. It was just a matter of their size and their hitters being able to find ways to score."
Junior Emily Hill led the Red Raiders in kills for the 15th time this year, finishing with 14 kills on her best hitting performance during Big 12 play of .394. Freshman Brooke Kanas joined her in double figures with 10 kills at .368 hitting.
Overall, the Red Raiders posted a solid hitting percentage of .237, but the size of Texas proved too much as Micaya White recorded 15 kills, Logan Eggleston tallied 12 and Yaazie Bedart-Ghani added 11 on .556 hitting.
All three seniors on the roster made appearances as middle blocker Katy Keenan opened the match with first serve before finishing with five kills and a team-high three blocks. Setter Missy Owens finished with 29 assists, four digs, a kill and a block, while reserve setter Kyndal Cowan checked in to serve with the Red Raiders trailing 11-10 in the second stanza.
In the first set, Tech trailed 19-17 when Eggleston delivered three kills to fuel a Texas 4-1 run that gave the Longhorns a comfortable 23-18 advantage.
In the second, Tech cut the lead to one at 21-20 after a Chandler Atwood kill. Texas responded with White notching three kills during a 4-1 run that gave UT the set.
Tech stayed tough in the third set, once again trailing by just two at 20-18 after a kill from Keenan. This time, it was Brionne Butler's sixth kill of the night that spurred a 5-0 run, capped by a kill from Bedart-Ghani that sealed the match.
With the loss, Tech finishes its 2018 home campaign with a 7-4 mark and moves to 9-86-2 all-time against Texas.
The Red Raiders will face a quick turnaround as they wrap up their 2018 regular season on Friday at Iowa State (15-13, 8-7), who swept Kansas on Wednesday. First serve from Hilton Coliseum is set for 6:30 p.m. on Cyclones.TV.
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