KU volleyball claims sweep at Cincinnati, draws closer to NCAA Tournament
photo by: Carter Gaskins/Special to the Journal-World
In its first-ever matchup against new conference foe Cincinnati, the Kansas volleyball team swept the Bearcats (25-23, 25-14, 25-23) on the road at Fifth Third Arena.
The Jayhawks stifled UC’s offense, which hit just .124 on the day with 22 attack errors, and got quality showings from the ever-reliable Reagan Cooper and Ayah Elnady, who tallied 15 kills apiece. Setter Camryn Turner had a strong all-around day with 35 assists, 11 digs and three aces.
Carly Glendinning was the only Bearcat to reach double-digit kills, as she had 10 and Ligia Williams had nine. Cincinnati led 23-21 in the third set on an Elnady attack error with a chance to prolong the match, but conceded four straight points, including three blocks, all of which Toyosi Onabanjo had a part in.
The first game had been similarly close, something of a surprise after KU jumped ahead 10-4. But Cincinnati used a 6-2 run in the middle of the set, aided by kills from Glendinning, Williams and Elissa Alcantara, to tie it up at 17. However, the Jayhawks pulled ahead on points from Turner and Elnady and maintained a two-point margin for the rest of the frame. Cincinnati staved off two set points before Cooper earned the decisive kill.
The second set was by far the least competitive, as the Bearcats never led. They fell behind 5-1 and 11-4 early and only got as close as 17-12 before KU scored eight of the final 10 points of the match, including four consecutive kills by London Davis to close out the result.
The Jayhawks, who have won 10 of their last 11 matches, only have one left this year — at home against UCF Saturday afternoon — and are currently ranked No. 15 in the country. They remain in position to host postseason matches. The NCAA Tournament selection show is at 5 p.m. Sunday.