Mizzou Volleyball Falls to Kentucky
COLUMBIA -- The Mizzou volleyball team lost to Kentucky, 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-14), on Wednesday night inside the Hearnes Center in front of a crowd of 2,362 fans. Mizzou junior All-American Lisa Henning led the Tigers with her 12th double-double of the season with 10 kills and 12 digs in the loss while sophomore Emily Wilson added nine kills on .350 hitting. Kentucky tallied 48 kills while the Tigers had just 31 in the loss.
"I thought Kentucky did a great job of exposing our weaknesses," head coach Wayne Kreklow said. "They served really tough and we had trouble passing and they kept us out of system all night. I thought that at times we played really well, but we weren't in system enough to consistently run our offense."
Aside from Henning and Wilson, Mizzou did not get a whole lot of production from any other hitter as setter Molly Kreklow had the next-best kill total with five in the match. She also spread 25 assists and pulled in eight digs with two blocks, just missing her 20th double-double of the season. Henning also added three blocks to her stat line as the Tigers out-blocked Kentucky, 8-5. But UK's strength came in the back row as it had 56 digs and was not aced in the match. Sarah Meister had a match-high 13 digs.
Mizzou came out on fire in the first set, opening a 5-2 lead before ultimately letting UK ties the set at 6-6 and eventually take the lead at 8-7 after a kill from Kayla Tronik. The Tigers attempted to keep things close, but UK served the Tigers very tough, making it tough for Mizzou to run its offense as the Wildcats took the frame, 25-17. Mizzou was as close at 13-12 but Kentucky scored 12 of the next 17 points to win the set. Mizzou hit .267 with 11 kills in the first set but allowed UK to hit .361 with 17 kills.
The Tigers again struggled with ball control in the second set as UK opened up a late lead at 24-17. But behind the serving arm of Regan Peltier the Tigers scored five straight points to keep the set interesting. But following a timeout, UK got a kill to send the match ton intermission with the Wildcats on top, 2-0. Henning and Wilson led the Tigers with eight kills apiece through two sets, Wilson doing so on .500 hitting.
Kentucky rolled in the third set, opening a 20-10 lead and ultimately claimed the set, 25-14. The Tigers fell victim to great Kentucky defense in the third set as they had just seven kills on 42 attacks. Kentucky, conversely, had 18 kills on 42 attacks in the third set. The loss drops the Tigers to 19-11 and 10-9 in SEC play.
Mizzou will return home to play Alabama in its regular season finale on Friday against Alabama at 6:30 p.m.