FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – For the second-consecutive match, Razorback co-captains Meredith Hays and Monica Bollinger tallied career-high performances but the University of Arkansas volleyball team lost its second five-set decision in as many matches Tuesday night to Oral Roberts. Hays finished the match with a career-high 29 kills while Bollinger posted a new high of 28 digs behind the Razorback block that had its fifth double-digit figures of the season.
With her effort Tuesday, Hays is the 10th student-athlete in program history to reach 29 kills in a single match and the first to do so since Kelli Stipanovich had 30 kills against Oral Roberts during the 2011 season. Hays surpassed her previous best of 23 kills which she set last weekend against Middle Tennessee at the K-State Varney’s Invitational. She completed her second double-double of the season with 10 digs and now has 11 in her Razorback career.
Bollinger is the seventh Razorback in program history to reach 28 digs in a single match. With the first 20-dig effort of her career, she exceeded her previous high of 18 digs which she had last weekend against Middle Tennessee. Bollinger had at least five digs in four of the sets Tuesday including a seven-dig performance in the second.
At the net, Ana Sofia Jusino led the Razorbacks’ blocking with a match-high seven total blocks. Arkansas had 12.0 total team blocks against Oral Roberts with Chanell Clark-Bibbs and Barbara Dapic each adding four total blocks of their own. Jusino also enjoyed a career-high mark with 12 kills in the match. For the second-consecutive match, Kori Ortiz came in off the bench to register 10 digs.
With the score tied at 10 in the fifth set, Arkansas (3-4) won three of the next four points to take a 13-11 lead to force Oral Roberts (5-3) into a timeout. The Razorbacks had a match point at 14-13 after a tandem block by Clark-Bibbs and Bailee Hankenson but ORU rattled off the final three points of the match. The last three meeting between Arkansas and Oral Roberts have gone to five sets.
Arkansas now turns its attention to this weekend’s Razorback Invitational at Barnhill Arena. The Razorbacks open play Friday at 7 p.m. (CT) against South Dakota. The tournament field also features Stony Brook and SMU. The weekend finale against SMU will be streamed live on SEC Network+.
Season tickets to join the crowd at Barnhill Arena are on sale and can be purchased online at ArkansasRazorbacks.com or by calling 800-982-HOGS (4647). Beginning at $40, all season-ticket packages include a free team knit hat. Single-match tickets are $5 for adults while UA students and fans 17 years and younger get in free.
Oral Roberts 3, Arkansas 2 (26-24, 21-25, 25-22, 23-25, 16-14)
Attendance: 671 | Time: 2:35
Arkansas Stat Leaders | Kills: 29 – Meredith Hays | Digs: 28 – Monica Bollinger | Blocks: 7 – Ana Sofia Jusino
• Arkansas Stat Leaders
o Kills: 29 – Meredith Hays
o Digs: 28 – Monica Bollinger
o Blocks: 7 – Ana Sofia Jusino
• Hays is first Razorback with 25 kills since Jasmine Norton had 27 at Kentucky on 11/20/11
o Moved into 26th on program’s career kills list with 558
• Bollinger is the seventh Razorback in program history with at least 28 digs in one match
o Moved into 34th on program’s career digs list with 465
• Jusino tallied her first double-digit kill match with a career-high 12 kills
• Fifth match of the season with at least 10.0 total team blocks
o Had 12.0 total team blocks vs. Oral Roberts
• Third-straight match between Arkansas and Oral Roberts to go five sets
• Next up: Home match Sept. 12 vs. South Dakota at 7 p.m.
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