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Volleyball Can't Hang On Against Texas
September 24, 2003

Norman, Okla. -- The Oklahoma volleyball team took control early in each game against Texas Wednesday night at the McCasland Field House but couldn't hold them off and lost 30-26, 30-28, 30-18. The loss drops OU to 8-6 on the season and 0-2 in the Big 12, while Texas improves to 6-5 and 2-1 in conference.

"Tonight was frustrating," said OU head coach Kalani Mahi. "We had good leads on Texas but couldn't sustain them. We have to continue to get better and improve our ball control."

Freshman Joanna Schmitt led OU with 17 kills, two aces and seven digs. Freshman Rachel Jackson and senior Kelly McCarter ran the Sooner offense, turning in 23 and 12 assists, respectively. Junior Keri Coats

tied a personal best with 12 kills, while hitting .375 (12K-3E-24TA).

"We had them on the ropes in games one and two," said Schmitt. "We got to 15 or 20 points and then let them back in the game. It's a disappointing way to begin our home season but we know exactly where we need to improve and we have practice at 2 p.m., tomorrow."

OU had leads of at least six points in games one and two before succumbing to late rallies by Texas.

Defensively, freshman Laura Tomes had one solo block and one block assists to lead OU, which had five total blocks on the match. Sophomore Jennifer Adams also recorded three block assists. Sheena Werling contributed a team-high nine digs, while senior libero Yvette Villanueva totalled four.

"I have to commend the freshman and sophomores," said Mahi. "Texas is good team and the underclassmen came out aggressive like we asked them to. They didn't back down one bit the entire match."

Leading the Longhorn attack was Mira Topic with 13 kills and Bethany Howden with 12 kills. Freshman setter Jenny Andrew assisted on a match-high 38 kills.

The schedule does not swing in OU's favor with No. 9 Kansas State up next in Manhattan on Saturday at 7 p.m. OU returns home on Oct. 4 with defending Big 12 Champion Nebraska in a match that is tentatively schedule for 7 p.m., at the McCasland Field House.
 

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