24 Oct

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No. 1 Texas Volleyball Remains Undefeated in Big 12 Action Following 3-0 Win at West Virginia

Sophomore middle blocker Molly McCage registered a career-high 11 kills as the Longhorns collected their 10th consecutive win.

Sophomore middle blocker Molly McCage registered a career-high 11 kills as the Longhorns collected their 10th consecutive win.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Behind a career high 11 kills by sophomore middle blocker Molly McCage, No. 1 Texas Volleyball collected its 10th consecutive win with a 3-0 (25-15, 25-20, 31-29) victory over West Virginia Wednesday evening at the WVU Coliseum. McCage and All-American outside hitters Haley Eckerman and Bailey Webster combined for 40 of Texas’ 48 kills in the win.

Texas (14-2, 7-0 Big 12) never trailed in game one, but it took a 6-2 run halfway through the set to break away from West Virginia (16-6, 2-5 Big 12) for an 18-11 advantage. Following the Mountaineers’ timeout, the Longhorns put two more unanswered points on the board with Sara Hattis’ second kill of the night and a block by Hattis and Chiaka Ogbogu. The teams traded points until Eckerman sealed the 25-15 Texas victory with her fourth kill. Eckerman, Webster and McCage each had four kills in the opening stanza and the Longhorns outhit the Mountaineers .517-.150.

The Longhorns broke a 2-all tie early in the second set with a 4-0 run that began on a Mountaineer service error. From there, Texas increased its lead to six points, 11-5, but West Virginia clawed back with a 6-3 run to dwindle the UT lead to just three points, 14-11. UT again increased its lead back to six points, 19-13, to force WVU to call its second timeout. The Mountaineers used a 4-1 run following the timeout to inch within three, 20-17, before a Webster kill put the Longhorns four points away from claiming the second set. Game two ended on West Virginia’s fifth service error of the match and Texas took a 2-0 lead into the break.

In a neck-and-neck third set, West Virginia strung together three straight points for its biggest lead of the match at 17-14. Down by one after a West Virginia service error and kill by Eckerman, Texas tied the game at 17-all with a block assist from Ogbogu and Khat Bell and took the lead on an Amy Neal ace. Eckerman’s 10th kill of the night increased the lead to 19-17, and back-to-back attack errors by the Mountaineers put the Longhorns ahead 21-17. West Virginia continued to fight back and pushed the game into extra points until back-to-back kills by Eckerman clinched the 31-29 Texas win.

Texas hit .384 (48-10-99) on the night for its best offensive production since beginning league action and held West Virginia to .239 (46-19-113).

Texas continues its Big 12 Conference road swing Saturday evening at K-State where first serve is set for7:30 p.m. Central.

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James Schleicher is the publisher of Horns Illustrated magazine. He's also a fifth generation Texan and lifelong Austinite. Follow @HornsIllus twitter to keep up with all things Horns Illustrated.