Morgan Odale became the 14th member of Utah's 100-ace club Friday night at the North Texas Invitational.
Sep 6, 2013
DENTON, Texas - The University of Utah volleyball team hit .271 while holding its opponents to a .155 mark in two matches at the North Texas Invitational on Friday in the Mean Green Volleyball Center. The Utes defeated Texas State, 3-1 (25-17, 20-25, 25-14, 25-21), in the afternoon before downing the host Mean Green, 3-1 (25-22, 25-19, 21-25, 25-16), in the nightcap.
Utah (5-0) held a .271-.155 advantage in hitting percentage throughout the day as the Utes posted seven double-figure-kill performances between the two contests.
"Different people are coming up big for us in critical situations," Utah Head Coach Beth Launiere said. "That has been a bright spot for us. We have been taking advantage of the opportunities that we have had so far this season."
Senior outside hitter Morgan Odale led the way with 3.25 kills per set with a .365 hitting percentage to go 2.25 digs and 0.38 service aces. With three aces on the day, Odale became the 14th member of Utah's 100-ace club. The Star, Idaho native has exactly 100 career aces.
"Makenzie (Moea'i) was great in the second match," Launiere said. "Morgan was huge and really good during the fourth set of the second match of the day, when we needed it."
Junior right-side hitter Shelby Dalton hit .417 on the attack and posted 3.12 kills per set as well as 1.12 blocks and 1.12 digs per set.
Junior outside hitter Chelsey Schofield averaged 3.00 kills per set and also came up with 21 digs, which worked out to a 2.62 dig-per-set average.
Moea'i pounded 2.75 kills per set, which included a team-high-tying 14 kills in the second match of the day against North Texas.
Senior Erin Redd-Brandon continued to climb Utah's career blocking charts with six block assists to improve her total to 419 (396 block assists and 23 block solos). On the attack, she came up with 2.00 kills per set.
Junior libero Lea Adolph had a team-high 3.38 digs per set and also fired five service aces for a 0.62 ace-per-set average. The Waltrop, Germany native has four double-digit-dig performances in five matches this season.
Utah def. Texas State, 3-1 (25-17, 20-25, 25-14, 25-21)
In the first match of the day, Utah held a 10-2 advantage in service aces over Texas State to go with a .269-.179 edge in hitting efficiency.
"Texas State is a good team," Launiere said. "They were scrappy on defense and were arguably the toughest team we have faced to this point.
"We served tough," Launiere said. "But we made too many errors in the second match of the day, so there's a fine line."
Adolph served a career-high five aces and she also popped up 11 digs, while three Utes were in double digits in kills in the weekend's opening match as Schofield turned in her first double-double of the season with a pair of match-high marks: 13 kills and 13 digs. She also pitched in a pair of blocks.
Dalton was efficient of the attack with 12 kills and one error on a .611 hitting percentage in addition to three blocks, two digs and a career-high two service aces.
Odale had 12 kills as well with only four miscues on 24 swings for a .333 hitting percentage and she also had five digs and a service ace.
Both Redd-Brandon and Moea'i finished with eight kills apiece as Redd-Brandon also had six digs and four blocks, while Moea'i had a .316 hitting efficiency with only a pair of errors on 19 attempts for her eight kills.
Defensively, Bateman tied Redd-Brandon for team-high honors with four blocks.
Cygan gave out 26 assists and Kirby dished out 18 to go with six digs.
Texas State stormed out to a 6-2 lead to open the match and with Utah trailing 11-7, the Utes launched a 13-1 run on the way to taking a 25-17 first-set victory. Utah hit .400 as a team, compared to just .095 for Texas State. The Ute attack was led by six kills on eight swings with just one error for a .625 hitting percentage by Odale and Schofield turned in five kills on 11 attempts
The Bobcats used another fast start in the second set and built a 10-6 lead and never looked back on the way to a 25-20 win over the Utes to even the match. Moea'i paced Utah's offense with six kills on eight attempts without an error for a .750 hitting percentage in the second frame.
The Utes turned the tables on the Bobcats in the third set and used a solid start to edge out to a 6-4 lead before going on a 7-1 spurt to take control of the set and go on to a 25-14 win and a 2-1 advantage in the match. Utah compiled a .429 hitting percentage as a team in the third set, while limiting Texas State to .167. Dalton took seven swings in the set and pounded down five kills with just one error for a .571 efficiency.
In the finale, Utah grabbed a 10-5 lead in the early-going, but Texas State rumbled back with six straight scores to claim an 11-10 advantage. The set would be tied seven more times before a 6-2 Utah spurt gave the Utes a 23-19 lead on the way to clinching the match with a 25-21 fourth-set victory. Schofield posted four kills on nine attempts in the finale, which gave her a .333 hitting percentage in the match-clincher.
Texas State (6-1) was led by nine kills from Alexandra Simms and six blocks by Ashlee Hilbun.
Utah def. North Texas, 3-1 (25-22, 25-19, 25-14, 25-16)
Moea'i led a group of four Utes who posted 10 or more kills with a season-high 14 kills. Odale produced her second double-double of the season, joining Moea'i with 14 kills on just 28 swings and three errors for a .393 hitting percentage. Odale also added 13 digs to complete the double-double.
Dalton pushed down 13 kills on a .300 hitting efficiency to go with seven digs and six blocks. Schofield just missed her second straight double-double after posting 11 kills and nine digs.
In the back row of the Ute alignment, Adolph turned in a team-high 16 digs. Bateman came up with a match-high eight blocks in Utah's front row.
The Utes scored five of the first six points of the night-cap against the home-standing Mean Green. NTU cut its deficit to two points (8-6 and 23-21), but could not come any closer as Utah led by as many as nine (18-9) during a 25-22 win to open the match. Dalton posted a team-high four kills, while Schofield dug up five Mean Green attack attempts.
Utah put together three straight scores at the start of the second set, but NTU would come back to tie the set three more times before the Utes took four of the next five points and an 11-8 advantage. Utah led by no fewer than two (11-9, 12-10, 19-17, 20-18) before closing on a 5-1 tear to clinch a 25-19 victory and a 2-0 edge in the match. Dalton added five more kills with a .500 hitting percentage after not committing an error on 10 swings. Odale had five digs in the frame, while Bateman came up with three blocks.
Utah raced out to a 7-2 edge in the third frame before NTU responded with a 4-1 jolt to cut its deficit to two (8-6). The two-point spread remained until it was 12-10 in favor of Utah before North Texas took charge of the set with a 13-3 tear on the way to a 25-21 win to extend the match. In the loss, both Schofield and Redd-Brandon had four kills apiece and Bateman turned in three blocks.
The Mean Green stretched out to a 5-2 lead at the beginning of the third set, but the Utes countered with an 8-3 run to grab a 10-8 advantage. Utah would lead for the remainder of the set en route to a 25-16 win to clinch the match. Odale saved her best for last with eight kills in the match-clinching set as she need just 10 swings for an .800 hitting percentage in the finale.
Carnae Dillard had 11 kills and nine digs for North Texas, which fell to 3-3 this season.
Four of Utah's five victories this season have come by the four-set variety.
The Utes continue their North Texas Invitational schedule with another doubleheader tomorrow, starting against Prairie View A&M at 1 p.m. CT and 5 p.m. CT.