NORMAN, Okla. – The University of Oklahoma volleyball team overcame a slow start to defeat Kansas State, 3-1 (29-31, 25-20, 25-21, 25-17) on Saturday afternoon. The Sooners (15-7, 8-5 Big 12) dropped the opening set in extra points before coming to life to take the final three sets over the Wildcats (8-14, 2-10 Big 12). The match went back-and-forth from the first serve and featured 38 ties and 12 lead changes.
“The first set could have gone either way,” said Oklahoma head coach Santiago Restrepo. “Unfortunately, we didn’t get the ball to fall our way at the end, but the team rallied back and played well. We competed and fought for the win and that was important since every Big 12 team is a tall task.”
Sophomore setter Brianne Barker recorded her 17th double-double of the season with 49 assists and 22 digs. It was Barker’s sixth career match with 20 or more digs.
Sophomore Suzy Boulavsky and junior Francie Ekwerekwu led the offensive attack with 17 kills each. Senior Bridget Laplante and junior Sarah Freudenrich each added 10 kills. Sophomore Caitlin Higgins contributed eight. Barker added the only other OU kill.
Boulavsky added 16 digs defensively for her second career double-double. She also dropped two block assists. Laplante tallied her third double-double of the season by adding 17 digs. She also supplemented her line with a season-high five block assists and hit .333 during the match.
Ekwerekwu’s 17 kills were a season-high. She managed to connect on all but three of her 36 attack attempts, producing a .389 hitting percentage on the afternoon. Ekwerekwu matched her season high with five block assists.
Freudenrich hit .455, registering no attack errors in 22 attempts. Defensively, Freudenrich added a career-high five digs. Higgins contributed 15 digs. Higgins, freshman Maria Fernanda and sophomore Danielle Alva each recorded one service ace.
Fernanda was second on the team with 19 digs and aided with a season-high eight assists.
After hitting just .197 in the opening period, the Sooners rebounded to finish the match with a .246 hitting percentage. While Kansas State registered one more kill than the Sooners’ (64-63), Oklahoma tallied fewer attack errors, 18 to the Wildcats’ 27. Each team totaled seven blocks.
Oklahoma travels to Baylor on Wednesday evening for a 7 p.m. CT contest. The Sooners return home on Saturday, Nov. 7 against Kansas. First serve from McCasland Field House is set for 7 p.m. CT.