Norman, Okla. - The University of Oklahoma volleyball team swept SMU, 3-0 (25-21, 25-19, 25-17) in its opening match of the 2012 Oklahoma Invitational Friday evening at McCasland Field House in front of 723 fans.With the win, the Sooners improve to 9-3 on the year.
"I think overall we did a pretty good job," said head coach Santiago Restrepo."When it came to crunch time we played the points better than they did, and we knew that it would eventually be crunch time."
"We had some uncharacteristic mistakes. We were a little bit undisciplined. However, we put a very good third set together and played well," said Restrepo.
In a career-performance, senior libero Maria Fernanda tied an Oklahoma individual match record with 25 digs in the sweep. Nearly a year ago against Auburn on Sept. 10, 2011, Fernanda totaled her first three-set, 25 dig performance and inked just the second of her career tonight, this time on her home court..
"Her performance was unbelievable," explained Restrepo. "She's capable of doing that every match; she can do anything that she puts her mind to. We're very happy for her. To get eight digs per set is unheard of."
Middle blocker Sallie McLaurin efficiently led the way for the Sooners with seven kills off of 12 swings with no errors to hit .583 on the night - a new season-best performance. The junior led her team with five total blocks off of one solo and four block assists.
The only two players donning Crimson and Cream to total more kills were freshman Kiera Holst with nine, and junior Keila Rodriguez with eight.
Freshman setter Julia Doyle hit .429 against the Mustangs, successfully attacking four of her seven swings, with just one error. For the 12th straight match she led the team in assists, notching 30.
In earlier action at the Oklahoma Invitational, New Mexico defeated Arkansas-Little Rock 3-2 (18-25, 25-20, 24-26, 25-17, 15-12). New Mexico improves to 11-1 and Arkansas-Little Rock falls to 4-6 on the season. Oklahoma will face Arkansas-Little Rock at noon at McCasland Field House on Saturday.
Tonight's match will air tape-delayed on Sooner Sports TV powered by Fox Sports at 10:30 p.m. on FS Oklahoma.
The tournament resumes Saturday at McCasland Field House beginning at 10 a.m. CT with SMU squaring-off against New Mexico. The Sooners will face UALR at noon, SMU takes on UALR at 5 p.m. CT, while Oklahoma and New Mexico close out the two-day invitational at 7 p.m. CT. GameTracker for all Oklahoma matches is available via the schedule page on Soonersports.com.
For all the latest information on Oklahoma volleyball, please log on to www.SoonerSports.com or, for up-to-the-minute updates, follow Oklahoma volleyball on Twitter at @SoonersVB (https://twitter.com/SoonersVB).