Back-to-back sweeps for K-State on Friday

Sep 6, 2013

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MANHATTAN, Kan. - The Kansas State volleyball team turned in their second sweep of the day with a 3-0 (25-13, 25-18, 25-17) victory over Southern Illinois on Friday evening in Ahearn Field House. K-State improves to 5-0 on the season.

The Wildcats offense carried the tide on Friday as K-State registered a season-best .500 hitting percentage over the three sets. Dakota Kaufman had 11 kills on a .529 clip while Lilla Porubek had 11 kills on 20 swings with one error for a .500 hitting percentage.

"We put together great offense and defense, and we were working on that lately," said Porubek. "We were working together the best in this game so far this season. We all had fun."

Porubek and Kaufman each had five kills in the opening set as the team overall registered a .654 hitting percentage. Back-to-back kills by Kaufman helped turn a three-point K-State advantage into a 17-8 run to end the set.

Redshirt freshman setter Katie Brand had a season-high nine kills, on an errorless 10 attempts, to also contribute to the impressive K-State offense. As demonstrated by Brand, the minimal amount of attacking errors (six) played a key role in the win.

"Our hitters all hit above, I think .330, so that is lights out," said Brand, who also contributed 31 assists. "We really managed well in bad situations."

Both the second and third sets were tight early on before K-State pulled away. Consecutive kills from Porubek in the third set provided K-State with a five-point advantage and forced a timeout by Southern Illinois. The Wildcats never allowed the Salukis to close any closer than four points in the remaining part of the second set. In the third, the two sides were tied at 9-9, but a kill by Chelsea Keating and four straight attacking errors by Southern Illinois put the set out of reach. Southern Illinois finished the match with 17 attack errors.

"Not making a lot of errors, and especially in transition offense in combination with first swing offense," said K-State head coach about the difference in Friday night's sweep compared to the one in the afternoon. "[Tonight] was probably our best effort in terms of being able to put an offensive effort together in both transition and first swing."

After setting a career-high with five aces earlier on Friday, senior middle blocker Kaitlynn Pelger added three more on Friday evening. She finished seven kills (.375 hitting pct.), five assists and two digs to go with the three aces.

K-State will wrap up the K-State Invitational on Saturday against Siena at 1 pm. Siena is winless through their first two matches of the tournament so far. The Wildcats, meanwhile, swept Southeast Missouri State to open their portion of the K-State Invitational on Friday.