NCAA volleyball: Texas clinches Big 12, Kentucky wins, Texas State gets 20th victory

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NCAA volleyball 11/14/2020-Gabby Waden-Mississippi State volleyball
Mississippi State's Gabby Waden attacks against Kentucky/Sloane Bush photo

Texas wrapped up the Big 12 title and the automatic NCAA Tournament bid that comes with it,  Kentucky won again to remain the only unbeaten team in the SEC, and the Sun Belt’s Texas State won its 17th in a row to improve to 20-1.

The recaps from the Big 12, SEC, and Sun Belt follow, but first a look at Saturday’s schedule of NCAA Division I volleyball matches. 

In the Big 12, Kansas State plays at Iowa State and TCU goes to Kansas State. 

The SEC shows Kentucky at Mississippi State and Texas A&M at Arkansas. 

And the Sun Belt regular season concludes with Texas-Arlington at Texas State.

To find links for any of those matches, go to the VolleyballMag.com TV & Streaming Listings.

BIG 12 — Texas hit .333 and improved to 14-0, all in the conference, with a 25-15, 25-8, 25-20 victory at West Virginia (7-7). The Big 12 title is the program’s fourth in a row and 13th overall.

Skylar Fields led the Longhorns with 14 kills and hit .414 to go with three blocks and a dig. Logan Eggleston had nine kills, the only two aces for Texas, two blocks, and nine digs. Asjia O’Neal had eight kills, hit .400, and had five blocks. West Virginia hit .017.

On Thursday, Texas lost the first set and then won at West Virginia 21-25, 25-15, 25-17, 25-15. Texas hit .321 and got 17 kills from Eggleston and 13 from Fields, who had six blocks. Brionne Butler had eight kills and nine blocks. WVU hit .088.

Texas Tech (5-9) completed back-to-back victories over visiting Oklahoma (2-8) for the first time since 2005. In Thursday’s 25-19, 25-27, 25-21, 27-25 victory, Texas Tech not only got 23 kills from Samantha Sanders, but broke a six-match losing streak.

Friday, the 25-12, 25-20, 25-23 included 11 kills from Sanders and 10 from Brooke Kanas. Sanaa Dotson had 12 kills for OU. 

Kansas State (9-4) overpowered visiting TCU (1-6) 25-15- 25-16, 25-15 behind 15 kills by Aliyah Carter, who hit .429. The Wildcats hit .367 as a team. TCU hit .088.

And Kansas (3-8) won in five at Iowa State (2-9), which lost its eighth in a row. Jenny Mosser had 25 kills in the 23-25, 25-20, 22-25, 25-19, 17-15 victory that took nearly three hours. Mosser hit .338 and had an ace, two blocks, and 11 digs. Rachel Langs had 10 kills and seven blocks, one solo. Candelaria Herrera led Iowa State with 20 kills and hit .375 to go with three blocks and three digs. Brooke Anderson had 10 kills, two assists, two aces, two blocks, and 15 digs. Izzy Enna had 27 digs, eight assists, and two aces.

SEC — Kentucky (7-0) routed Mississippi State (2-5) 25-15, 25-12, 25-16 as the Wildcats hit .357. Madi Skinner led a balanced attack with 12 kills and hit .647 after making one error in 17 attacks. Alli Stumler had 10 kills and Azhani Tealer nine and eight blocks. Kentucky played without leading attack Avery Skinner, who is out with a sprained ankle. State hit .042.

Arkansas (5-2) beat visiting Texas A&M (4-3) 15-25, 25-21, 25-20, 25-21 as Devyn Wheeler had 15 kills and hit .480 and Jillian Gillen had 14 kills. Morgan Christon had 20 kills for A&M, which lost its third in a row.

Earlier in the week, Florida and South Carolina split two matches. The Gators swept on Wednesday, but South Carolina bounced back to win in five on Thursday to give Florida its first defeat of this fall season and break a 23-match losing streak against Florida.

In the first match, Florida (5-1) won 25-17, 25-17, 25-22 as the Gators hit .319. Thayer Hall led with 13 kills, hitting .400, and added three blocks, an assist, and four digs. South Carolina hit .114.

South Carolina (5-3) won the Thursday match after coming back from a 12-9 deficit in the fifth set 25-21, 17-25, 21-25, 25-13, 15-12. Riley Whitesides led with 23 kills and hit .413, and Kyla Manning had 16 kills, three blocks, two aces, and nine digs. Hall led Florida with 20 kills, three blocks, and four digs. 

SUN BELT — West Division leader Texas State (15-0 Sun Belt) beat visiting Texas-Arlington (9-6) 25-15, 25-22, 25-17. Janell Fitzgerald led with 13 kills. 

East Division leader Coastal Carolina (16-0, all in the SBC) kept pace as the Chanticleers ended their regular season with a 25-11, 23-25, 25-19, 25-12 win over visiting App State (1-12). Anett Nemeth led Coastal with 20 kills and hit .514 and Ani Bozdeva had 13 kills as their team hit .389. App State, which got 10 kills from Lexi Kohut, hit .134.

And Georgia Southern (4-10) hit .361 as it swept visiting Troy (10-6) in the regular-season finale for both teams. Mya Wilson led GSU with 15 kills and Baylor Bumford had 13.

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