LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas State’s two middle blockers tallied double-digit kills in a 3-0 win over rival Kansas in front of a packed house at the Horejsi Family Athletics Center on Wednesday. The 19th-ranked Wildcats (9-2; 1-0 Big 12) earned the 31st sweep in the series by scores of 30-20, 30-21, 30-25 with a hitting percentage of .272 in the Big 12 opener.
With new season highs, sophomore Kelsey Chipman led the Cats in kills with 14, while Megan Farr added 13. Both middle blockers hit over .400 and tallied only three errors between the duo. Rita Liliom and Nataly Korobkova each added nine kills.
Senior Angie Lastra had a match-high 18 digs, while senior Lauren Rosenthal added a season high 10. K-State finished with eight team blocks and had five block assists from Farr and three from a trio of Wildcats: Liliom, Korobkova and Chipman.
Chipman led the Cats during the first game, tallying six of K-State’s 17 kills. Through the first points, the in-state rivals battled neck-and-neck with five ties with the last being at 5-all. The Wildcats went on a 6-1 run, powered by two Chipman and two Farr kills, before the Jayhawks burned a timeout. K-State was able to prevent Kansas from getting within four points the remainder of the first set and earned the final two points on Jayhawk errors to win 30-20.
A sluggish start in the second game found K-State down 10-3 and already without a timeout. The Wildcats, down by as much as eight on two occasions, fought back to within three at 20-17 before KU’s first timeout. A Liliom kill tied the game at 21-all and forced the Jayhawks to take their final timeout. The Wildcats ended the game with 12 unanswered points to capture the win in the second, 30-21. Chipman played a hand in the string of points, contributing with three kills and three block assists, while Spiegelberg added two kills and two block assists.
Looking to avoid its first loss in six matches, Kansas started the game with a three-point lead at 4-1 before K-State responded with four-consecutive points to earn its first lead. After two Jayhawk points, the Cats again notched four-straight to earn a three-point lead at 9-6. After KU’s first timeout of the third game, K-State went on a 4-1 run, including a third four-point streak. With no timeouts left, the Jayhawks responded with a 6-1 run to get within one before a Wildcat timeout. KU earned its first lead since 6-5 at 15-14. A Liliom kill tied the game at 18-all and the Cats continued to roll with six unanswered point to gain a 23-18 lead. The Jayhawks made a last effort with three-straight points, but K-State finished the game with two Chipman kills and a last point from an attack down the middle from Farr.
The Wildcats will host Baylor Bears on Saturday, Sept. 15th, in the Big 12 home opener at 1 p.m. from Ahearn Field House. For live stats and complete results, please visit www.kstatesports.com.
Courtesy: Kansas State University