Sept. 7, 2010
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Sarah Freudenrich returned to Arkansas Tuesday evening and the senior was a big factor in Oklahoma’s five set win over Arkansas (6-2). Freudenrich hit .400, delivering a season-high 14 kills as the Sooners won 3-2 (22-25, 25-19, 25-15, 21-25, 15-10) to move to 5-3 on the year. Junior Suzy Boulavsky exceeded her previous career best, downing 22 kills with a .429 hitting percentage to lead the Sooner offense that saw three players in double-digit kill totals.
Junior setter Brianne Barker guided the offense to a .325 hitting percentage, its highest since hitting .347 in a sweep of Rice last season. The percentage was OU’s best as a team in a five set match during the rally scoring era (25 and 30 points).
Barker’s 57 assists were also a career-high and her 12 digs gave the Amarillo native her fourth double-double of the season. Five Sooners had double-digit dig totals. Barker, freshman Eden Williams, junior Caitlin Higgins and sophomore Maria Fernanda all had 12, while freshman Andrea McQuaid added 11.
Freshman Cortney Warren recorded OU’s only block solo and tallied a season-best 10 kills. Boulavsky and freshman Sallie McLaurin added three block assists each.
Kelli Stipanovich led Arkansas with 18 kills and hit .630. Cassie Clarke had 43 assists and 11 digs for the Razorbacks.
Arkansas led 6-3 in the first set before three consecutive kills from the Sooners evened the score at 6-6. After trading points, the Razorbacks regained the three-point advantage after a kill from Stipanovich and back-to-back blocks. OU once again fought back to tie the match only to see the lead diminish. With UA leading 15-11, OU cut the lead to two and after a service ace from Higgins evened the score at 16-all. Arkansas re-took a three-point advantage at 21-18 forcing OU to call a timeout.
Out of the break, the Sooners responded with a block from Freudenrich and Barker before Barker’s attempt at a long overpass found the floor on the other side of the court for a kill. A block from Higgins and senior Francie Ekwerekwu brought OU to within one at 23-22. The Razorbacks reached set point on an OU attack error and took the set on a service ace from Kendall Cleveland.
Oklahoma took a 6-4 lead to start the second set. Arkansas came to within one but OU eventually extended the lead out to 11-8 on a kill from Boulavsky. After a Razorback timeout, UA committed back-to-back attack errors to stretch OU’s advantage to 13-8. After giving back one point, a kill from Boulavsky and service ace from Fernanda resulted in another Arkansas timeout as OU led 15-9.
The Sooners held the Razorbacks to just four points following the break, leading 23-14, before UA mounted a comeback. Arkansas scored four straight points to pull the score to 23-18 and forced OU to call a timeout. Warren’s kill gave OU set point but an Arkansas kill delayed the end of the set until Boulavsky delivered the kill to tie the match at the intermission.
Oklahoma jumped out to a 6-2 lead to start the third set only to see the Razorbacks rally to tie the set at 7-all. A kill from Freudenrich and a service ace from Williams re-gained the lead for OU as the Sooners went up 14-9. Oklahoma went ahead 16-9 on two UA attack errors and held the Razorbacks in check down the stretch. OU led 21-14 following a kill from Higgins and a timeout by Arkansas stopped play. A block by Higgins, a UA attack error and two kills from Freudenrich captured the set for OU, 25-15.
The Sooners led the fourth set early 4-2 but were unable to hold the lead as the Razorbacks bounced back to take a 13-10 lead and held that advantage until a kill from McLaurin and double block from Boulavsky and McLaurin cut the margin to 18-17. The Razorbacks responded and never allowed OU to get as close as two points as UA took the set 25-21.
Oklahoma controlled the fifth set early but was unable to pull away. The Sooners led 8-6 at the switch and McLaurin gave OU a 9-6 lead before Arkansas called a timeout. Out of the break, McLaurin recorded three kills to put the Sooners up 11-7 before another break was called by the Razorbacks. OU held its own down the stretch as kills from McLaurin and Warren brought OU to match point at 14-9. It was Boulavsky’s career-high 22nd kill that put the match away as OU won the set 15-10.
The Sooners return to action this weekend at the Dr. Mary Jo Wynn Invitational in Springfield, Mo.