Sept. 1, 2010
SAN ANTONIO - Baylor's volleyball team got 12 kills from Ashlie Christenson and 23 digs from Caitlyn Trice to take a sweep (25-19, 25-16, 25-17) in their first road match of the season at UTSA in San Antonio, Texas.
"This feels like a whole new team," head coach Jim Barnes said. "We really saw everyone step up and contribute, and that's what we were hoping for tonight."
Baylor struck first, setting the tone for the match with an 8-2 run to open the night. From that point, Baylor's defense controlled the play, while the offense stepped up with 38 kills and just eight errors. To go along with Christenson's 12 kills on the outside, Baylor's big front line put up spectacular numbers. Torri Campbell, Elizabeth Graham and Ashley Byrd combined for 20 kills and just two errors in 35 total attempts.
"I though Ashlie (Christenson) had a great night," Barnes said. "She really stepped up and played like a veteran tonight.
Campbell also helped the offense with her serving game, recorded five service aces, including a stretch of four in a row in the third set.
On defense, Trice, the reigning Big 12 Player of the Week, averaged over seven digs per set on her way to a total of 23. Up at the net, Graham led the way with six block assists, while Christenson and Briana Tolbert each added three assists.
For UTSA, Kendra Rowland led the way with 12 kills and five errors on 31 attempts, while Kelsey Schwirtlich had 24 assists and 13 digs. As a team, the Roadrunners hit .082 with 31 kills and 22 errors on 110 attempts.
In the first set, Baylor's early lead came on the strength of Christenson and Graham. The duo each recorded a kill, then back-to-back blocks on UTSA's Brittney Malloy and Whitney Walls. The Roadrunners showed signs of life, getting the score back to 12-11, but Christenson and Byrd recorded back-to-back spikes and Campbell notched her first service ace of the day for a 18-14 lead. Three UTSA errors and a kill by Campbell finished off the set 25-19.
The second started even with UTSA getting a Malloy kill to close within one, but Baylor didn't let them get that close again, opening up the lead with a 4-0 run to make the score 12-6, followed by a 5-1 stretch for a 19-12 lead. Byrd recorded two kills and Allison King had one. Down the stretch, Campbell and Christenson each put away two kills for a 25-16 lead.
At the start of the third set came Campbell's serving barrage. Christenson spiked the first kill, then Campbell forced an early UTSA timeout with four straight service aces, including two that tickled the top of the net. Graham and Christenson each added two more kills to make the score 9-1 and Baylor got a chance to give Zoe Adom and Qian Zhang some valuable playing time.
Zhang entered and served three in a row, ending in a service ace and a kill by Christenson. Adom entered with the Bears up 20-13 and promptly recorded a block assist with Graham and two kills on just four total attempts with no errors.
Baylor travels north for the weekend to take part in the Diet Coke Classic, hosted by the University of Minnesota on Sept. 3-4. The Bears will join Dayton and Northern Iowa. BU will take on the Minnesota on Friday at 8 p.m. Follow the action with live stats and live audio on www.BaylorBears.com.