Armes' Career Night Paces No. 18 UK Past Indiana
Sept. 4, 2009
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Behind a career-best night from sophomore Ann Armes the No. 18 Kentucky volleyball team captured a 3-1 (25-23, 19-25, 25-19, 25-18) win over the homestanding Indiana Hoosiers Friday night. Armes totaled career-highs with 15 kills on a .520 hitting percentage to help UK improve to 5-0 on the season.
As a unit, Kentucky hit a blistering .390 in front of a hostile crowd of 1,128 fans at University Gym. Armes led the attack with her 15 kills and junior Sarah Mendoza was the other Wildcat to reach double-figures with 10 hammers. Junior Lauren Rapp and sophomore Gretchen Giesler chipped in with nine kills apiece and sophomore Becky Pavan added eight.
“I thought it was a good win for us on the road, said Kentucky coach Craig Skinner. “Anytime you go in front of a hostile environment it is hard to play your best and we did not play our best in game two and Indiana did play well. But, I thought we responded like a veteran team should and came out and got the job done.”
It was an entire team effort for the Blue and White. Senior setter Sarah Rumely was masterful at dishing the ball in the victory totaling 47 assists on the night while adding five kills of her own and a pair of aces. She and Pavan paced the defense at the net as Pavan garnered six blocks with Rumely adding five. Senior BriAnne Sauer led the back row with 10 scoops.
The Wildcats emerged from the gate clicking on all cylinders as they laid down five kills to open the first set and take an early 6-2 edge. Rumely was spreading the ball to all parts of the court as four of UK's first five kills came from different attackers. With the score at 8-5, Kentucky came up with three huge points defensively. Rumely and Giesler turned back an Indiana attack and then Rumely teamed up with Pavan on consecutive rejections giving UK an 11-5 advantage and forcing Indiana into a timeout.
Kentucky went up 14-8 behind an Armes hammer, but Indiana slowly charged back into the contest taking a lead at 19-18 on a service ace. Mendoza tied the score again with a beautiful touch shot, and the match went back and forth until UK grabbed a two-point edge at 23-21 in large part due to a few Hoosier errors including the set winner when the Hoosier attacker put the ball right into the net.
Mendoza paced the attack with five kills while Armes added four. UK hit a dazzling .444 in the opening frame, but Indiana was also impressive with a .367 clip. Kentucky registered four blocks—the deciding factor in the opening stanza.
Indiana opened the second set with four consecutive points before Armes was able to register a kill and get the Wildcats on the board. The home team held the lead the entire second stanza and UK never got closer than within five points midway through the match. The Hoosiers benefited from seven unforced Kentucky errors while bettering the Blue and White by four kills in the frame.
Out of the break with the teams tied at one set apiece, Pavan opened the third frame with a powerful slam to give the visitors an early 1-0 edge, but Indiana would fire back and take a 7-4 lead. Kentucky rolled off three straight points to tie the score with a Pavan-Rapp block. The match continued to be a back-and-forth battle with neither team taking more than a two point lead. The team of Giesler and Rumely helped UK pull away with two crowd-silencing blocks midway through the set giving the Blue and White a 16-11 advantage. Armes set her career-high kill total when she slammed home her 12th kill of the night making the score 19-14 in favor of UK. The Wildcats never looked back continuing to roll and claiming a 2-1 set edge behind a Rumely kill.
The Blue and White used a match-high .552 hitting percentage to pull away from the Hoosiers in the third set. The Wildcats also benefited from four blocks in the stanza.
In the fourth set the teams traded points back and forth with UK holding a steady three-point edge throughout most of the frame. Pavan helped pave the way for UK to shake the Hoosiers with a masterful slam down the left line and then Rumely contributed an ace for a 21-16 edge forcing Indiana into a timeout. Rumely finished things off for the Wildcats with a pair of aces in the final four points and Kentucky emerged victorious.
UK returns to action Saturday at 4 p.m. ET and will face UT-Martin in the final contest of the weekend for the Blue and White.
Complete coverage of the Wildcats at the Indiana Adidas Classic can be found at UKathletics.com. Live stats are available for every match at the official site of the Kentucky Wildcats.