Wildcats Sweep Texas Tech for 15th Win

LUBBOCK, Texas - The K-State volleyball team picked up its second Big 12 road win in a row, behind double-digit kills by Kylee Zumach and Katie Reininger, as the Wildcats swept Texas Tech, 3-0 (27-25, 25-18, 25-22), on Saturday in the United Supermarkets Arena.

Zumach led all Wildcats (15-2, 2-1 Big 12) with 15 kills, including seven in the first set to help the Wildcats overcome a double-digit deficit, while Reininger had 11 kills to go with her four blocks.
"Any time you can get road wins in the Big 12, it shows some resiliency," said K-State head coach Suzie Fritz. "An apparent characteristic of this team is that they are resilient. We probably had no business coming back in the first set, but they stayed in the present and played point-to-point. Had that first set got away from us, there might have been a different outcome."
Natali Jones was efficient on her 12 attempts, dropping in seven kills for a .417 hitting percentage. The redshirt senior, who entered Saturday leading the Big 12 in blocks/set, also had a team-best five blocks.
Three Wildcats reached double-figures in digs, including 16 by Kersten Kober. Katie Brand had 12 digs to go with her 38 assists, helping her register her 11th straight double-double and 13th overall this season. Chelsea Keating had 10 digs along with five kills and two aces.
"Natali Jones and Kylee Zumach played pretty well, and our passing was improved," said Fritz about what went well. "Since the KU match--really the last 10 days--we've been talking a lot about passing and serving, which allowed us to have the success that we had."
K-State's win was its first at Texas Tech (14-2, 2-2 Big 12) since October 8, 2011, and moves them to 5-0 in true road contests this season.
K-State fell behind 12-1 early in the first set as the Wildcats committed six attack errors, but starting with Zumach's first of seven kills in the opening set, K-State climbed out of its deficit. The Wildcats would tie it up for the first time at 18-18, on a kill by Reininger, but Texas Tech quickly took a two-point lead, 20-18, on back-to-back blocks.
A kill followed by an ace by Brooke Sassin evened it up at 20-20 while a Texas Tech attack that was too long gave the Wildcats their first lead of the match, 22-21. K-State was up against Texas Tech's set point at 24-23, but kills by Zumach, Jones and Reininger eventually gave K-State the set.
In set two, both sides were locked in a tight-knit affair, but two kills by Zumach as well as kills by Reininger and Brand helped the Wildcats score four-straight points and take an 18-14 lead. K-State never allowed the Red Raiders to climb any closer than three points through the remainder of the set as K-State scored five of the final six points to take the 2-0 lead in the match. Reininger followed up her sixth kill of the match with a solo block to give the Wildcats set point.
Ignited by a kill by Jones on a quick up the middle, K-State opened up a lead in the third set after scoring four straight points to make it 11-8. Texas Tech would tie it up twice, first at 19-19 and then at 21-21, but three kills and an ace by Keating helped the Wildcats pull away towards the end. A block by Reininger and Brand gave the Wildcats match point.
The Wildcats will return to action on Wednesday, October 8, when they take on Iowa State in Ahearn Field House at 7 p.m.
Prior to this week's two wins, the last time K-State played consecutive conference matches on the road and won both contests was in 2004 when it beat Missouri on Sept. 25 and Oklahoma on Sept. 29
K-State is 14-0 all-time in three-set matches vs. Texas Tech.
This year marks the first time K-State has won its first five road matches in a season since 1978 when the Wildcats finished that season with a perfect 5-0 road record.