ST. LOUIS – After opening the Marcia E. Hamilton Classic with a sweep of Saint
Louis, WKU Volleyball came up short on Saturday, dropping decisions to [RV]
Marquette (3-0) and Kansas State (3-1) to close out the weekend. The Lady Toppers
fell below .500 to 3-4 as they head back to The Hill for a nine-game home stand.
“Today was a frustrating day for us,” head coach Travis Hudson opened. “For the
first time all year I didn’t like the level we competed at. We had some good
opportunities across today’s matches and didn’t take advantage of them. We simply
make too many mistakes right now to give ourselves a chance against high-level
Senior Rachel Anderson was named to the Marcia E. Hamilton Classic All-Tournament
Team with a scorching weekend hitting percentage of .533.
MATCH 6: WKU 0, [RV] MARQUETTE 3 (25-22, 25-18, 25-22)
WKU’s first set of the day was a back-and-forth affair from start to finish, as both
sides traded run for run. All tied up at 22-22 down the stretch following a Katie
Isenbarger kill, Marquette rallied and finished the frame on a 3-0 run to take a 1-0
lead in the match.
Marquette flew out of the gate in set two, opening a 6-0 lead and pushing it ahead
to 10-2 and 15-7 before WKU was able to get things going. At that point, the Lady
Toppers strung together a 3-0 run to pull back within five and stuck around for the
remainder of the set but ultimately fell 25-18 as the Golden Eagles took a 2-0
advantage in the match. The Red and White’s offense found the floor for 13 kills and
a .241 hitting rate in the frame.
Tied at 5-5 out of the break, Marquette put together a 6-0 run to push ahead of the
Lady Toppers in the third set. Trailing 13-7, WKU tallied the next three points to
cut its deficit in half. Back within two at 22-20 thanks to a Rachel Anderson kill,
Marquette picked up two crucial points before WKU fended off match point twice on a
Katie Isenbarger kill and Darby Music ace before the Golden Eagles shut the door on
the 25-22 third set.
Sophia Cerino led WKU with nine kills in the match – her first time leading the Lady
Toppers in the category. WKU worked at a .161 offensive clip with setting duties
shared by Taylor Bebout and Mary Martin again. Bebout notched her first collegiate
double double with 23 assists and 10 digs.
MATCH 7: WKU 1, KANSAS STATE 3 (25-18, 25-22, 26-28, 25-17)
Kansas State jumped out to an early advantage in the first set against the Red and
White but WKU hung around and challenged the Wildcats. Out to an 18-9 lead at one
point, WKU strung together a 4-0 run to force a KSU timeout. Out of the break WKU
pulled within 19-15 but the Wildcats closed things out with the 25-18 first set win.
Second set action open with the Lady Toppers hitting double digits first at 10-5 but
the Wildcats hung around. KSU used a 4-0 run late in the frame to take the lead for
good at 22-20. Kansas State went on to take a 2-0 match with the 25-22 victory.
Set three saw a total of 12 ties and five lead changes between the sides as WKU
managed to avoid the sweep, claiming the set 28-26 after fending off two match
points for the Wildcats. The Lady Toppers put up 19 kills in the frame led by
Isenbarger’s seven and five more from Kayland Jackson.
In the final set against KSU, the Wildcats jumped out to an early lead that WKU
could never recover from. Kansas State worked ahead to a quick 16-8 advantage before
WKU would ultimately hang with the Wildcats as both squads tallied nine points the
rest of the way.
Three Lady Toppers recorded double-digit kills as Isenbarger led the way with 13,
followed by Rachel Anderson and Kayland Jackson each at 11.
Defensively, four Lady Toppers racked up double-digit dig efforts with Payton
Frederick leading the charge with 16. Hallie Shelton and Taylor Bebout each
registered 12 while Emma Kowalkowski added 11.
The Lady Toppers out-killed the Wildcats 55-51 and out-dug them 66-54.
Bebout and Martin shared offensive-facilitating duties, as WKU worked at a .192
clip. Bebout recorded 31 assists for her second double double of the day while
Martin added six helpers.
With six of the squad’s first seven matches on the road to open the 2018 season, WKU
Volleyball will now return to The Hill where it will play its next nine matches. The
Lady Toppers will host two weekend tournaments, a midweek matchup with Cincinnati
and two Conference USA tilts (Middle Tennessee and Charlotte) before leaving Diddle
Arena to play again.
* WKU is now 1-2 all-time against Marquette with the Golden Eagles claiming
the past two matchups.
* The Lady Toppers are now 0-1 against Kansas State with the first meeting in
program history in the books.
* Run of the day: A 7-1 run in set three against Kansas State starting at
15-12. With KSU looking to sweep the match, WKU responded out of a timeout to push
ahead to a 19-16 advantage and avoid the sweep, ultimately claiming the set 28-26.
* Redshirt-freshman Taylor Bebout registered 23 assists and 10 digs in WKU’s
loss to [RV] Marquette – her first collegiate double-double performance and WKU’s
second of the season. She added her second career double-double in the weekend
finale with 31 assists and 12 digs against Kansas State.
* The last time three WKU hitters notched double-digit kills was the Second
Round of the 2017 NCAA Tournament.
* With four Lady Toppers recording double-digit digs, the last time the feat
was accomplished was the 2017 season against Dayton. WKU achieved the feat twice
last season (also against Miami (OH)).
* The last time WKU suffered two losses by 3-0 scores was the 2015 season, a
year the squad went 32-4 overall and advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round.
The last time WKU suffered two 3-0 losses before conference play started was the
2014 campaign (three 3-0 losses before C-USA play started).
* Rachel Anderson earned All-Tournament Team honors for the second-straight