Wegner Breaks Two School Records as Kansas State Edges Missouri, 3-2
Sept. 26, 2001
Manhattan - Senior outside hitter Liz Wegner became Kansas State's all-time kills leader with a season-tying 26 on Wednesday evening, as the Wildcats won a heartstopping five-game battle with Big 12 Conference rival Missouri, 30-22, 19-30, 30-25, 23-30, 15-13, before 1,026 fans at Ahearn Field House. She also set the school mark for 20-kill matches with the 27th of her career.
With the win, Kansas State moved to 6-3 overall and 2-1 in Big 12 Conference play, while Missouri dropped its second five-game match in five days in falling to 9-2 on the season and 1-2 in league play. The victory not only marked the seventh straight over the Tigers in Ahearn Field House, but also extended the Wildcats' home winning streak to five matches.
"This was a great collegiate volleyball match tonight," said head coach Suzie Fritz. "To come back from four points down in game five was a tremendous feat for our team. We knew that this was going to be this type of match, so I can't say enough about how proud I am of this team. They showed a lot of character. And what a night for Liz (Wegner) to break the record. She is a big time player. I get a little emotional when I talk about her. I'm extremely proud to be her coach."
Missouri dominated the statistics across the board, topping Kansas State in kills (78-71), hitting percentage (.249 to .216) and total blocks (13-9), but the Wildcats edged the Tigers in digs (80-74) and service aces (6-4). It marked the first time this season that K-State has won a match and been outscored in kills and hitting percentage.
Kansas State overcame an early deficit in game one, as the Wildcats scored eight straight points on the serve of sophomore Jenny Pollard to take an 11-6 lead. Missouri would battle to within 14-10, however, the Wildcats would push the lead to as high as eight points in an eventual 30-22 victory. Wegner posted 10 of K-State's 20 kills in the game on .389 hitting, while Lisa Mimick added five digs.
Missouri broke open a tight game two with five straight points with the score knotted at 15, as the Tigers rode a .545 hitting percentage en route to a 30-19 victory. The Wildcats managed just a .115 hitting percentage.
The seesaw battle continued in game three, as the Wildcats rallied from a 12-9 deficit to tie it at 15-all then used three straight points with the match tied at 16-all to gain a 30-25 victory. Wegner tossed in seven kills, while Gabby Guerre and Mimick added six digs each.
In game four, the two teams battled through countless lead changes and ties before Missouri gained back-to-back points with score knotted at 18-all. The Wildcats closed to within 21-20, but was outscored 9-3 down the stretch, as the Tigers evened the match at two games apiece. Kansas State struggled to just .156 hitting in the game, but Jenny Pollard led the team with eight kills on .615 hitting.
In the decisive fifth game, Kansas State battled back from a 7-3 deficit to tie the match at 10-all, then with the score tied at 13-all, sophomore Lisa Martin gave the Wildcats the victory with her career-high sixth block and seventh kill on the night. K-State hit an impressive .417 in game five, while holding Missouri to just .233 hitting. Jayne Christen, Mimick and Martin each had three kills in the game.
Like she has all season, Wegner led the way for Kansas State, as she tallied her sixth double-double of the season with a team-high 26 kills and 16 digs in the victory. Often overshadowed by the Wegner's big numbers, Pollard continued her impressive play this season with 14 kills and 12 digs in the victory. In just her second career start, Guerre earned her first career double-double with 57 assists and 14 digs. Mimick and Christen each added eight kills, while Mimick tied Wegner's team-high dig total with 16. In her first significant action of her K-State career, Lisa Martin added seven kills on .600 hitting with a team-high six blocks.
Junior Lisa Morris led four Tigers in double-digit kills and two with double-doubles, as she tallied 23 on the night to go along with 12 digs. Sophomore Chrissy Elder posted the team's second double-double with 57 assists and a team-high 14 digs. Senior Christi Myers and sophomore Mary Lauren Smith also performed well, turning in 17 and 12 kills, respectively, while each added six blocks.
Kansas State continues its long homestand on Saturday when the Wildcats play host to 23rd-ranked Texas (8-2, 3-0 Big 12) at Ahearn Field House beginning at 7 p.m. The Wildcats have won four straight over the Longhorns dating back to 1999.