MANHATTAN, Kan. – In search of the program’s first-ever road win at Kansas State, the University of Arkansas volleyball team delivered with a five-set win Friday night over the host Wildcats. Redshirt senior Pilar Victoria recorded the fourth 30-kill performance of her career, tallying a match-high 34 kills to go along with 14 digs for a double-double. Setter Rachel Rippee dished out a career-high 57 assists while Hailey Dirrigl and Reagan Robinson posted 11 and 10 kills, respectively.
Kansas State was the first of two weekend opponents that played in last year’s NCAA Tournament. The Razorbacks return to the court Friday evening for day two of the K-State Invitational, taking on sixth-ranked Wisconsin at 5:30 p.m. (CT). Sunday’s weekend finale against Syracuse is scheduled for 11 a.m. Arkansas’ next home match is Sept. 5 against Oral Roberts at Barnhill Arena.
Arkansas 3, Kansas State 2 (21-25, 25-14, 25-23, 15-25, 15-9) | Box Score
Attendance: 1,528 | Time: 2:13
Ahearn Field House (Manhattan, Kan.)
- Leaders at Kansas State
- Kills: Pilar Victoria – 34 (fourth 30-kill performance, first against a non-conference opponent)
- Digs: Okiana Valle – 15
- Blocks: Kelly O’Brien – 3.0 (0-3)
On the first point of the decisive fifth set, Arkansas (4-0) set the tone with a tandem block by Rippee and Elizabeth Pamphile. The teams traded points until the score was tied at 5-all and Robinson put down back-to-back kills to push the lead to 7-5 and force a Kansas State timeout. The Razorbacks went up 13-9 after a successful challenge by head coach Jason Watson reversed a no-net call and gave Victoria her final kill of the night.
With the help of errors by Kansas State (2-2) on the next two plays, Arkansas secured the five-set victory. Robinson tallied three of her 10 kills in the fifth set. Collectively, the Razorbacks posted a .550 hitting percentage in the fifth set with no attack errors.
After a slow start and dropping the first set, Arkansas jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the second set and forced Kansas State into a timeout after an ace by Rippee. With a pair of Victoria kills and a tandem block by Dirrigl and Kelly O’Brien, Arkansas led 17-9. Robinson served up an ace to give the Razorbacks a handful of set points at 24-13, and on the second opportunity, Victoria evened the match with her 11th kill of the set.
The home team won four of the first five points of the third set before Arkansas steadied and pulled even at 10-all with back-to-back kills by Victoria. The Razorbacks used a 7-1 run to turn the scoreboard in their favor and won 10 of 12 points for a 17-12 lead after a kill by Dirrigl. The freshman attacker was held without a kill for the first two sets but responded with six in the third set. Kansas State pulled to within one late but Robinson found the floor on set point for the 2-1 match lead.
The Wildcats controlled the early stages of the fourth set, winning nine of the first 12 points of the frame. Their lead reached 11 at 23-12, and went on to force a fifth set. Friday’s five setter was the fourth in the all-time series between Arkansas and Kansas State. The Razorbacks have won their last two five-set matches against K-State.
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