LUBBOCK, Texas – The Texas Tech volleyball team heads into Big 12 Conference play on a hot streak after the Red Raiders posted back-to-back wins over Incarnate Word and UTEP to clinch the Red Raider Classic crown.
Tech defeated UIW 3-1 and downed UTEP 3-0 to win the team’s annual tournament at United Supermarkets Arena. Katy Northcut and Emerson Solano earned All-Tournament laurels while Emily Hill was honored as the MVP of the weekend.
With the pair of wins, Texas Tech heads into conference action with a 10-4 overall record and spotless 3-0 mark at United Supermarkets Arena.
The Red Raiders continued their winning ways in the second match of the Red Raider Classic thanks to a 3-1 win over UIW. Hill (17), Caitlin Dugan (12) and Brooke Kanas (10) each recorded double-digit kills while freshman Cadi Boyer followed closely behind with eight – several of which came at crucial moments for Tech in the final set.
Boyer and Dugan also teamed up for a total of nine blocks. Rohme continued to impress as she posted 44 assists in Tech’s afternoon match.
The opening set began as a back-and-forth battle with each team responding point for point. The first of four match service aces for Northcut gave Tech its first lead of the game at 7-6. Northcut and Hill recorded a total of three service aces throughout the set. Tech rebounded from a 17-21 deficit thanks to a Hill service ace and three UIW errors. Pounding the final point, Dugan ended the set with a decisive kill to win the set, 25-22. With 10 tied scores and three lead changes in the set, Dugan and Hill led the Red Raiders’ charge with five and four kills, respectively.
The second set was another back-and-forth contest with 13 ties and three lead changes. Following a 4-1 run, Tech led 10-7 but three errors allowed UIW to tie the set at 10 all. In response, a kill from Hill and a service ace from Emerson Solano tied the set again at 12-12. The score remained tight due to a slew of kills from Hill and Kanas, as well as errors by both teams. In the end, UIW squeaked by with a set win, 23-25.
UIW continued their momentum in the third set and the Red Raiders fell behind 8-3 after seven unanswered points for the Cardinals. While Tech trailed 10-4, a long volley – which included acrobatic moves from Solano to keep the point alive – sparked a Red Raider 14-0 scoring run to overcome the deficit and take an 18-10 advantage. Three kills from Kanas and two service aces from Northcut highlighted the Red Raiders’ run, which also included five errors by UIW. Five Red Raiders recorded 11 kills including Kanas who finished with a .667 hitting percentage. After the barrage of points, UIW responded with just five points – resulting in a dominant set win for Tech at 25-15.
Once again UIW started on top in the fourth set as the Cardinals took an early lead. After trailing for the first half, a thundering kill by Hill pushed the score to 17-14 and shifted the momentum. Two consecutive kills from Kanas brought the Raiders within one point at 17-16. Determined to grind out a win, Boyer recorded two kills and a service ace from Kylie Rittimann gave the Red Raiders their first lead of the game at 20-19. The Cardinals committed three errors and a match-winning kill from Boyer ended the final, 25-20, for a Red Raider win.
After a break in action, Texas Tech returned to the court hungry for one more win. Thanks to 43 kills against the Miners, the Red Raiders earned just that and walked defended their home court with a 3-0 sweep over UTEP.
Hill led the Red Raiders’ charge with 11 kills while Rohme tallied 33 assists on the night. Solano paced the pack with 11 digs and Katy Northcut collected the Red Raiders’ only ace of the night.
Tech got off to a fast 3-0 thanks to a trio of UTEP attack errors. During the back-and-forth set, the Red Raiders pulled away thanks to a 7-3 run that was highlighted by kills from White and Kanas. Hill added a kill of her own on a free ball to bring the Red Raiders to a 20-16 lead. Rohme kept Tech’s fire alive and dumped a couple of closes passes over the net to hold the Red Raiders’ lead over the Miners. After a few UTEP points, Hill ended the set, 25-19, with a huge block in the middle. The Red Raiders tacked on 12 kills in the opening stanza compared to UTEP’s eight.
Tech went on a 6-1 run to start the second thanks to six kills. The barrage forced a UTEP timeout, but the Red Raiders never relented. Three consecutive kills from Hill and Kanas gave the Red Raiders an 11-5 advantage, but UTEP closed the gap and came within two points at 15-13. Tech broke away with a four-point advantage after Jones and Dugan both buried kills and sophomore Hannah Allison moved Tech to 24-20 with her first kill of the weekend. UTEP crept within one point, but an attack error committed by the Miners gave Tech a 25-23 win in the second.
Texas Tech would trail UTEP for the first time in the match after the Miners went up 1-0; however, the Red Raiders would go on a 6-1 run after a few errors by UTEP and kills by Hill and Kanas. Texas Tech was up 10-4 at one point and continued to dominate the Miners with multiple kills by Jones. Back-to-back blocks by Hill and Jones increased Texas Tech’s lead to 20-13. Haley Harman picked up her first kill of the match to bring the Red Raiders to a 22-15 lead. Another error by UTEP ended the set and gave Texas Tech the sweep.
The Red Raiders trailed UTEP for the first time in the match after the Miners went up 1-0 to start the third. However, Tech exploded on a 6-1 run thanks to a few UTEP errors and kills from Kanas and Hill. Leading 10-4, Tech continued to dominate the Miners thanks to several kills at the hand of Jones. Back-to-back blocks from Hill and Jones increased Tech’s lead to 20-30 and Haley Harman picked up her first kill of the weekend to bring the Red Raiders to a 22-15 advantage. UTEP tried to rally the troops but a block from White and Harman moved Tech to set point and one final UTEP error sealed the 3-0 sweep for the Red Raiders.
The Red Raiders are set to open up Big 12 Conference play on Wednesday, Sept. 25, against West Virginia at United Supermarkets Arena.