Volleyball Suffers First Loss In 3-1 Decision Against Oklahoma
Sept. 10, 2004
PROVO, Utah-- - Tiara Gilkey recorded a double-double with 15 kills and 12 digs, while Ashley Liford and Fehi Tuivai each posted carer-highs in kills with 12 and 11 each, but Oklahoma was able to outlast the Tigers to claim a 3-1 win in the opening match of the BYU Mizuno Classic on Friday. The loss was the U of M's first of the year as the fall to 5-1. Oklahoma remains undefeated at 6-0.
Memphis got off to a slow start in Game one, falling behind by as much as three points, before a Melissa Nance ace tied the game at nine. A 4-0 run fueled by Heather Watts serve gave the Tigers a 14-10 advantage that they were unable to maintain as the Sooners battled back to tie the contest at 20. A kill by Tuivai gave the Tigers a 27-26 lead, but Oklahoma then scored the next two points to claim a 28-27 lead. The Sooner would never relinquish that lead to hand Memphis its first loss of a game all season, 32-30.
Oklahoma took control of the match in the second frame. Memphis held a 12-9 lead, but OU's overpowering offense scored 14 of the next 19 points to take a commanding 23-17 advantage. The Sooners took Game two, 30-23.
Memphis overcame an early 4-0 deficit to go ahead 13-10. For the third straight game, Oklahoma would not be denied, fighting back to take a the lead, 18-16. A service ace by Watts tied the game at 23 and an attack error by Oklahoma gave the Tigers a 24-23 lead. The Sooners scored the next three points to go up 26-24. Memphis showed poise in a match-saving comeback as an Emily Steckel ace tied the game at 28 and Liford followed with a kill to put the Tigers ahead 29-28. After an OU point tied the game 29-29, Gilkey hammered her 10th kill of the match and the Sooners added an attack error to give Memphis a 31-29 win, handing Oklahoma its first loss of a game this season.
Game four saw OU use a 5-0 run to take the matches largest lead at 12-4.
Memphis pulled to within three at 19-16. A Sooner rally helped them regain a solid lead at 22-17. The Tigers scored the next four points to close the gap to 22-21, but Oklahoma was able to hold on for the 30-27 win.
Watts had 55 assists and 10 digs for Memphis and Nancy Nellans added a double-double with 10 kills and a team-high 17 digs.
"it was good to see Ashley (Liford) hit .500 with 12 kills, said Carrie Yerty. "We had opportunities to change the match, but made mistakes. This is a good match for us to learn from and a good opportunity to help prepare us for the competition we will see the rest of the year."
Sooners outside hitter Joanna Schmitt led all players with 23 kills, while setter Rachel Jackson posted a game-high 57 assists. Oklahoma also got 12 kills from Keri Coats and 10 each from Jennifer Adams and Gabriela Tonon.
The Tigers will play in the Classic's nightcap against host BYU at 7:30 p.m. The Tigers will play thier second doubleheader in as many days tomorrow when they face UCF and Utah Valley State at Noon and 5:30 p.m., respectively.