Aug. 30, 2014
GREEN BAY, Wisc. - The K-State volleyball team led at one point in all three sets and fought to extra points in the third, but the Wildcats were swept by Arizona 3-0 (25-21, 25-18, 26-24) to finish second in the Green Bay Country Inn & Suites Tournament at the Kress Events Center.
Arizona's Madi Kingdon had a match-high 23 kills, hitting at a .315 clip on 54 attempts, to overcome the K-State defense. K-State (2-1) allowed Arizona (3-0) to hit .244 for the match while it hit .147 on 129 attempts (36 kills, 17 errors).
"We stayed pretty low error, even under pressure, which is not easy," said K-State head coach Suzie Fritz
about her team's effort. "We didn't miss a lot of serves, and we didn't hit a lot of balls out of bounds. We just had a hard time finding the floor in terms of putting the ball down. We got kind of narrow in how we were playing. When one thing doesn't work, you have to be creative and find something else that does work. We have to learn that."
led K-State in kills (8) and blocks (6) while she also contributed two digs and one of the team's two aces.
Sophomore Brooke Sassin
had six kills, giving her 24 throughout the tournament, as she was one of two Wildcats named to the all-tournament team. Redshirt sophomore Katie Brand
, who had a double-double on Saturday evening with 27 assists and 12 digs, was also named to the all-tournament team. The setter contributed four kills and two blocks against Arizona as well.
In the first set, K-State led as late as 15-14 when Reininger tallied one of her two kills in the set, but Arizona used a 4-0 run to take an 18-15 lead. The Wildcats did rally, however, pulling within one at 20-19 following three straight errors by Arizona.
Kingdon, who had seven kills in the opening set, helped the Wildcats seal the set with a 5-2 run and tallied set point with a kill.
K-State led midway through the second set as well, but as in the first, Arizona utilized a 4-0 run to seize a 15-14 lead. A kill from Kylee Zumach
on two occasions evened the set, including the second tying it at 16-16, but a service error by Brand ignited another 4-0 run for Arizona that eventually led to the set loss.
The Wildcat offense could not break the Arizona defense in the latter part of the second as K-State hit .178 for the entire set. Arizona, meanwhile, hit .333.
K-State staged a threat to forcing a fourth set in the third when it faced set point, 24-23, after a service error by Arizona. A kill from Kingdon followed by back-to-back errors from K-State flipped the script of the third in favor of Arizona.
K-State had 14 kills and hit .200 in the third set, its highest marks in both categories across all three sets.
"We have to be able to develop offensive balance and productivity, and we have to be able to do it from match to match, regardless of who is on the other side of the net, if we want to be where we really want to be," said K-State head coach Suzie Fritz
The Wildcats will return to action with their home opener against Arkansas on Thursday, September 4 at 6 pm in Bramlage Coliseum. It will be the first match of the three-day Varney's Invitational in Bramlage.
K-State finished with 10.0 blocks to Arizona's 5.0. With 29.5 blocks in three matches this season, K-State is averaging 3.3 blocks per set.
The meeting between K-State and Arizona was the third in the all-time series, but first in 27 years. Arizona has won all three meetings in the series.
Kingdon was named the tournament MVP while her teammates Ronni Lewis and Penina Snuka, joined her and Sassin and Brand on the all-tournament team.