FAYETTEVILLE – The energy inside Barnhill Arena on Sunday was booming and rightfully so, as the University of Arkansas Volleyball team (4-0) defeated Ole Miss (0-4), earning the Hogs’ first sweep of the season and remaining undefeated in conference play.
- Jillian Gillen | 12 kills, three service aces
- Taylor Head | 11 kills, .423 hitting %, 12 digs
- Devyn Wheeler | 10 kills, .529 hitting %
- Team-best .386 hitting %
How It Happened
Arkansas picked up right where they left off yesterday, storming out to a quick 12-8 lead over Ole Miss with back-to-back kills by Wheeler and Head. The Rebels were forced to call a timeout and out of the break, the Hogs claimed four of the next five points, topped with a service ace by Wheeler, to give Arkansas a 16-9 advantage. Ole Miss would make a late effort to close the gap, but a service ace by Gillen would seal the first set in the Razorbacks favor (25-18).
The Razorbacks came out in the second set with another hefty lead, ahead of the Rebels, 18-13 mid-way through the set. Ole Miss used a timeout to readjust and would use a six-point scoring run to take a 19-18 lead late in the second set. A Rebel service error would give the serve back to Arkansas, as the Hogs battled through the final points of the set and with the help of a kill from redshirt-junior Hailey Dirrigl and senior Liz Pamphile, Arkansas made it a two-set match lead with a 25-22 second set victory.
It was all Hogs in the third set, as Arkansas delivered 18 kills behind a .567 hitting percentage. Head would be the star of the third set, with six kills and no errors in 13 attempts, her error-free third set gave Head a clean slate for the entire match. Arkansas managed a perfect 100% sideout rate (11-11) against Ole Miss in the final set and just as they finished the first set, a Razorback service ace would cue “Hard to be Humble” with a definitive 25-11, set three win.
Hear from the Hogs
“Being back in Barnhill is a great feeling because the crowd gives us so much energy,” said senior Devyn Wheeler. “After a year of no volleyball matches, we are excited to play again and come back even better than before.”
“It was a solid weekend for our team,” said head volleyball coach Jason Watson. “We played clean today, after being pressured yesterday. I’m happy we responded the way we did given the challenge of playing back-to-back.”
The Hogs will have a quick turn-around this week, as they travel on Tuesday to Columbia, Mo. to play the Mizzou Tigers on Wednesday and Thursday of this week. “This is a tough turn around for us,” said Watson. “We play a ranked Missouri team on Wednesday and Thursday, in their house. It’s an opportunity for us to be tested and see where we are as a team.”
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