GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Senior Meredith Hays registered her 800th career kill but the University of Arkansas volleyball team lost in three sets Sunday afternoon on the road at No. 8 Florida. Hays finished the day with a match-high 15 kills, her 14th outing of the year with 15 or more kills. With Sunday’s result, Arkansas drops to 11-9 overall and 5-2 in SEC action.
Facing an 0-2 match deficit, Arkansas trailed by as many as five points early in the third set before mounting a comeback to take its first lead at 12-11 and force a Florida (14-3, 8-0 SEC) timeout. The Razorbacks maintained an edge and led 20-18 after a kill by Samantha Skinner. However, the host Gators won seven of the last nine points of the match to seal the victory.
After a slow start in the match, Hays broke through with eight of her 15 kills in the second set. The Hereford, Texas, native now has 15 or more kills in six of Arkansas’ seven SEC matches this season. Hays is the 19th player in program history to reach 800 career kills and moved past Amanda Anderson (2009-12) on the all-time list. Sunday was Hays’ fifth match of the year with a .300 hitting percentage or higher and 15 or more kills. She hit .345 against the Gators.
Over the final two sets of Sunday’s match, the Razorbacks posted a .311 hitting percentage after being held to an .065 figure in the first. Chanell Clark-Bibbs was second on the team with five kills while Skinner and Liz Fortado each had four kills against Florida.
Defensively, junior Monica Bollinger tied for the match high with nine digs. She also added four assists in the match which marks the sixth time she’s recorded four or more helpers from the libero position. Savannah Voelzke was second on the team with six digs which is just one shy of her career high. She now has at least five digs in the last five matches.
The Razorbacks now return to Fayetteville in preparation of their next match, an Oct. 24 home contest against 12th-ranked Kentucky. First serve of the match is scheduled for 7 p.m. (CT) at Barnhill Arena. The Arkansas-Kentucky match will be on SEC Network+ available through the WatchESPN app. Arkansas also has an Oct. 26 date at Alabama scheduled next weekend.
No. 8 Florida 3, Arkansas 0 (25-16, 25-20, 25-22)
Attendance: 2,022 | Time: 1:29
O’Connell Center | Gainesville, Fla.
• Stat Leaders at #8 Florida
o Kills: 15 – Meredith Hays
o Digs: 9 – Monica Bollinger
o Blocks: 2 – Samantha Skinner
• Meredith Hays: 19th player in program history with 800 career kills
• Monica Bollinger: sixth match of the season with four or more assists from libero position
• Meredith Hays: 15 or more kills in 14 matches this season including six of seven SEC matches
• Samantha Skinner: fourth SEC match with at least one service ace
• Savannah Voelzke: five or more digs in all five SEC matches played
• Next match: Oct. 24 vs. #12 Kentucky, 7 p.m. (CT) at Barnhill Arena in Fayetteville on SEC Network+
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