COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Trailing by as many as six points in the third set, the University of Arkansas volleyball team rallied past Texas A&M Friday night and picked up its first conference road win of the season. Redshirt senior Pilar Victoria registered a match-high 15 kills while freshman Hailey Dirrigl posted five of her nine kills in the final frame. With the victory, the Razorbacks tallied their ninth sweep and improved to 14-6 overall with a 4-4 mark in SEC play.
Arkansas returns to Barnhill Arena on Sunday afternoon to host Mississippi State. First serve of the conference matchup is scheduled for 12 p.m. (CT). The Razorbacks lead the series, 39-5, including wins in 20 of the 21 played in Fayetteville. After the match, the team will host a clinic for fans in the eighth grade and under. To register your child, click HERE.
Arkansas 3, Texas A&M 0 (25-20, 25-17, 26-24) | Box Score
Attendance: 1,056 | Time: 1:33
Reed Arena (College Station, Texas)
- Leaders at Texas A&M
- Kills: Pilar Victoria – 15
- Digs: Okiana Valle – 12
- Blocks: Elizabeth Pamphile, Pilar Victoria – 3.0
- How the Razorbacks ended each set…
- First set: score tied 17-17, won eight of the last 11 points
- Second set: trailed 17-16, won the last nine points
- Third set: trailed 20-14, won 12 of the last 16 points
With her 13th kill of the match, Victoria moved into 16th place on the program’s career kills list. She now has 965 kills during her Razorback career, moving past former standout and current director of operations Meredith Hays (2013-14) who tallied 962 kills in her time in Cardinal and White. In the middle, Kelly O’Brien and Elizabeth Pamphile combined for 13 kills and a .375 hitting percentage.
Defensively, junior libero Okiana Valle tied for the match lead with 12 digs. She was one of five Razorbacks who picked up at least seven digs against Texas A&M. Victoria and Texas native Krista Kolbinskie each had nine digs while setter Rachel Rippee had eight to go along with 35 assists. Playing in her home state, senior co-captain Kori Ortiz had seven digs on the way to collecting the 700th dig of her career.
The Razorbacks jumped out to an early lead in the opening set and led 15-11 at the media timeout after back-to-back Texas A&M errors. With the score tied at 17-all, the visitors won seven of the next nine points to arrive at set point on a kill by Victoria. On its second chance to close out the opener, Arkansas took the 1-0 match lead when the Aggies were called in the net on a joust.
After a back-and-forth start to the second, the Razorbacks jumped ahead 10-6 on the second ace of the match by Dirrigl. Texas A&M (6-9, 3-5 SEC) rallied to take a 17-16 lead but Arkansas rattled off the final nine points of the set to secure the 2-0 match lead. During the run with freshman Paige Johnson at the service line, Victoria put down five kills including the set winner. The Razorbacks’ offense had a .406 hitting percentage and just one attack error in the second set.
The Aggies used a 7-2 run midway through the third set to turn a one-point lead into a 20-14 advantage. However, Arkansas began chipping away at its deficit and pulled ahead at 22-21 on a solo block by Dirrigl. During the Razorbacks’ 12-4 run to close the match, Dirrigl had three kills and two blocks. Battling the Texas A&M block throughout the third, Victoria responded with the final two kills of the match including an overturned challenged by head coach Jason Watson on the team’s second match point.
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