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Arkansas volleyball battles hard in home loss

Arkansas volleyball battles hard in home loss

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The University of Arkansas volleyball team had a valiant effort come up just short in a five-set loss to Tulsa in Barnhill Arena Wednesday. Arkansas (1-6) fell 25-14, 21-25, 25-19, 23-25, 12-15 to the Golden Hurricane (6-1). The Razorbacks return to action at home hosting the Arkansas Invitational Friday and Saturday. “It was a great effort by both teams tonight,” said Arkansas head coach Robert Pulliza. “This is the best volleyball we’ve played all year. I’m not upset with the team – just bummed for them to not get the win. It’s hard to say anything bad except that we lost.” Arkansas hit a season-best .254 with seven blocks and 71 digs in the loss. They out-hit Tulsa, .254-.224 and had 11 more digs. The Razorbacks were paced by sophomore Heather Royal and freshman Kelli Stipanovich who each posted career-bests with 19 each. Senior Christina Lawrence made a successful return to the court after being sidelined with injury. Lawrence finished with seven kills and hit .333. “I’m very excited for Heather tonight,” said Pulliza. “This is her second consecutive performance that has been really good. It was also great to see Christina get back on the court. Her numbers are pretty impressive.” Arkansas opened the match on fire hitting .536 with 19 kills and only four hitting errors. The Razorbacks dominated the set as Tulsa never got the offense going. The teams played very even from that point on with momentum shifts and lead changes becoming almost routine for the match. The nail-bitter came down to game five and continued along the same lines with a back-and-forth battle. Tulsa held a one-point, 8-7, lead as the teams traded benches but Arkansas grabbed the 9-8 lead quickly. The set was tied at nine and 11 before Tulsa took the lead, 12-11, and Arkansas called its final timeout. Junior Destiny Clark got a kill to knot it at 12 but Tulsa took the lead for good with a pair of kills and an Arkansas hitting error for the win.

Sports Category : Volleyball (W)