Sept. 10, 2010
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Kansas State Wildcats had to use two comebacks to get a sweep over Virginia Commonwealth in their second match of the day at the UK Invitational on Friday afternoon, but it was a win in the end for the Wildcats. K-State rallied from behind in the second and third sets to make the sweep possible as the team faced deficits of seven and nine points respectively to get the win 25-18, 30-28, 26-24.
K-State (5-4) was led by senior outside hitter JuliAnne Chisholm with 16 kills and a strong .297 hitting percentage on 37 swings. Sophomore middle blocker Kaitlynn Pelger added nine kills and four blocks while senior libero Lauren Mathewson posted 14 digs. Mathewson had 12 digs through the first two sets. VCU (1-7) spread its offense around as no player had double digits in kills but three had eight or more.
To open the match K-State used an early run of five straight points to take a 10-4 lead and continued to roll with a four-point run midway through the set to push the lead back to six points. With the Wildcats up seven points at 21-13, VCU made a push with three straight points, but K-State would answer and hold off the charge to win the first set 25-18.
The second set was a different story for the Wildcats but with the same result as they dug a huge hole for themselves but managed to find their way out and get the win to go up 2-0 at the break.
The Wildcats slowed down as the Rams jumped to a big lead at 8-2 in the second set. K-State continued to struggle to find its offense or find a way to stop the Rams throughout most of the set and trailed by six points 23-17 late in the set running out of opportunities. K-State created its own opportunities by keeping rallies alive and scored six straight points to tie it up with four kills from Chisholm during that stretch. Both teams then exchanged blows back and forth for a while before the Wildcats finally ended the set with an ace from Pelger to win 30-28.
Again in the third set the Wildcats had to come from behind after a slow start but fired on all cylinders to make the rally. Trailing 15-6 the Wildcats then outscored the Rams 20-9 to win the set 26-24 and the match 3-0.
K-State used a six-point run to take the lead 21-19 as the Rams could not slow the Wildcats and began making errors themselves to help the comeback continue. Two long rallies with kills by Dakota Kaufman and Chisholm closed the match with the Wildcat bench celebrating the sweep.
The Wildcats close the UK Invitational at 5 p.m. Eastern on Saturday as the play the host No. 16 Kentucky Wildcats from Memorial Coliseum. The match can be heard on 1350 KMAN with Brian Smoller calling the action. Live stats will be online at kstatesports.com and fans can watch a live video feed at ukathletics.com for a fee.