Jonesboro (ASU) — The Arkansas State Red Wolves (14-11, 8-5) fell in five sets to the North Texas Mean Green (18-12, 10-5) Saturday night at the ASU HPESS Facility.
The two teams are now tied in the Sun Belt Conference West Division standings. However, Arkansas State holds the advantage in sets 5-4. North Texas would need a win at home in its last match and an ASU loss in one of its final three matches to surpass the Red Wolves.
"We have three matches left, and North Texas just has one," said ASU head coach Justin Ingram. "Each match is certainly valuable, and they all have different obstacles. UALR is first for us, and they are hot right now after beating North Texas yesterday. We need to rebound from tonight and train well on Monday so we can perform our best when we meet them Tuesday."
UNT came out strong, battling to a 25-23 set one win, but the Red Wolves rallied to take sets two and three, 25-18 and 25-22. The back-and-forth race continued, but the Mean Green came out on top, winning set four 25-22 and set five 15-12.
"We're trying to sustain a higher level of play, and siding out quicker is something we have to put a bigger emphasis on. Credit to UNT, they were really hitting it, but we weren't doing a well enough job of defending around and behind it."
Three Red Wolves posted double-digit kills, including junior Cayla Fielder with 19 and sophomores Kelsie Hodges and Jasmine Terry with 10 each. Three A-State players also put up double-digit digs, including freshman Megan Baska with 26, sophomore Allison Kearney with 21 and freshman Sadie Clark with 11. Kearney also added 48 assists, while Clark notched a team-high four service aces.
The ASU volleyball squad will be back in SBC action Tuesday, Nov. 9 when it travels to Little Rock, Ark. to face in-state rival UALR in a 7:00 p.m. contest. The Red Wolves return to Jonesboro to close out the regular season, hosting ULM and Louisiana-Lafayette Nov. 12 and 13.