Mizzou Volleyball Sweeps Mississippi State
STARKVILLE, MS -- The Mizzou volleyball team defeated Mississippi State, 3-0 (25-9, 25-16, 26-24), on Sunday afternoon behind a torrid offensive attack in Starkville. As a team, Mizzou hit .295 with 41 kills as junior All-American Lisa Henning led the Tigers with 15 kills on .351 hitting while pulling in nine digs. Freshman Regan Peltier was also very good with 10 kills on .269 hitting. The win improves the Tigers to 19-10 overall and 10-8 in the SEC. The Tigers rallied from down 20-14 in the third set to win the frame, 26-24, completing the sweep.
"I was very pleased with the way we played in the first two games," head coach Wayne Kreklow said. "We didn't play as well coming out of intermission, but I thought we did a great job of battling back to take the third game - being down 20-14, that is quite the accomplishment to come back from that. Now we have two matches left and we need to start preparing for a tough Kentucky team on Wednesday."
Aside from Henning and Peltier, the Tigers got five kills on just eight attacks from sophomore Whitney Little and got five more from Emily Wilson. Junior setter Molly Kreklow tallied her 19th double-double of the season with 32 assists and 11 digs in the win. Sophomore Sarah Meister tallied a team-high 14 digs in the match as well.
The Tigers took an early lead over Mississippi State, due in large part to Mississippi State making errors. The Tigers built a 17-7 lead after the offense began to fire on all cylinders midway through the first set. From there, Mizzou scored eight of the final 10 points of the set to claim the opener, 25-9. Mizzou had 10 kills on .375 hitting in the first, led by three from Peltier. Mississippi State was limited to just -.062 hitting with 10 errors and just eight kills in the opening frame.
The Tigers again were on fire offensively in the second set, tallying 15 kills on .412 hitting with just one error as they took the second set, 25-16. Through two sets, Peltier led the Tigers with seven kills on 15 errorless attacks while Henning was just as impressive with six kills on 15 errorless attacks. The Tigers as a team hit .397 while MSU hit .175 in the set.
Coming out of intermission, Mississippi State used a great defensive effort, digging a lot of ball while covering well nearly everywhere as it ran out to a 20-14 lead after frustrating the Tiger hitters. Mizzou then went on a 4-0 run after a huge kill from Peltier, but Kreklow served one off the antenna to end the rally, but Mizzou was back into the set at 21-18. From there, things stayed close until Mizzou tied the score at 23-23 after a kill from Little. MSU's Taylor Scott then hit a ball into the net to give the Tigers a 24-23 lead and Mizzou eventually claimed the set win at 26-24 after another error from Scott.
Mizzou will return home for its final two matches of the regular season next week. The Tigers will host Kentucky at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday in a match that will likely be vital for the Tigers' NCAA Tournament chances. The Tigers then host Alabama at 6:30 p.m.