Kentucky Dominates in 3-0 Sweep of Missouri
Nov. 21, 2012
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Kentucky logged 48 kills, eight service aces, 56 digs and five blocks in a dominating 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-14) victory at Missouri on Wednesday night in front of 2,362 fans at the Hearnes Center. UK's serving resulted in eight service aces and constantly flustered the Tigers en route to an impressive win on the road.
Kentucky improves to 19-10 overall on the year and 13-6 in Southeastern Conference action. Missouri drops to 19-11 and 10-9 in league play. UK will conclude its regular season on the road at Auburn on Friday. First serve is set for 4 p.m. ET.
"I was really pleased with our transition game tonight," Kentucky coach Craig Skinner said. "I thought we executed really well on our first, second and third contacts as well as we have all year in that aspect. I'm proud of our effort and focus all the way through the match in a tough environment on the road."
Senior Christine Hartmann directed the offense to the tune of 34 assists to accompany 11 digs for her second-consecutive double-double effort. Hartmann found five attackers for six or more kills on the night and registered five hammers of her own.
Junior Whitney Billings posted a match-high 13 kills and led the team with four blocks in the match. Senior Ashley Frazier was the other UK attacker to reach double-figures with 11 kills marking her seventh-straight match with 10 or more kills. She posted her attacks on a .409 hitting percentage.
Senior Stephanie Klefot led a tremendous effort in the back-line for the Cats. Klefot had 13 digs with sophomore Jackie Napper picking up 11 and junior Jessi Greenberg adding eight.
UK surged ahead 1-0 in the match opening with a 25-17 first set win. Kentucky had 17 kills on a match-high .361 hitting percentage to begin the night. Three different Wildcats logged four kills in the first frame.
The Tigers began the scoring and the teams would exchange points back-and-forth until UK shook loose for a 4-0 run to garner a 12-8 advantage with Frazier igniting the run with a pair of aces. The lead would be all the Wildcats would need en route to a dominating opening set win capped off by consecutive kills from O'Conner and Billings.
Kentucky prevailed in a tough-fought second set with a 25-22 win. UK totaled 13 kills on a .119 clip with the Tigers generating 13 kills on a .132 percentage. Frazier had four kills on .800 hitting to pace the Wildcat attack.
A pair of blocks from the duo of Morgan and Billings gave Kentucky an early 3-1 edge. The home team fought back and knotted things at four beginning a string of exchanging points. The Wildcats then utilized an 9-5 run to earn a 20-15 edge with Tronick and Billings teaming up for a block to give the visitors its largest advantage of the stanza. Kentucky kept the pressure on and earned a 24-17 lead before the Tigers saved set point five times to make things interesting. Following a timeout, O'Conner smashed home a kill to give UK the 25-22 win and a 2-0 edge into the break.
UK trailed early in the third frame as the Tigers came out firing. Three-straight kills from Hartmann, Frazier and Billings reclaimed the lead for Kentucky at 6-4 and the Wildcats never trailed again. Consecutive kills from Billings gave UK its largest lead of the set at 18-6 and never looked back. Morgan fired away from the clinching-point at 25-14.
The Blue and White closed out the match with 18 kills on .286 hitting as Billings paced the attack with seven kills on .419 hitting for the final set. UK had 28 digs in the set led by seven from Klefot guiding the Cats to limiting Missouri to just seven kills on .071 hitting.
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