JONESBORO, AR (ASU) – The Arkansas State volleyball team lost to Western Kentucky 3-0 (25-14, 25-16, 25-20) in Sun Belt Conference action at the Convocation Center Saturday night.
With WKU up 2-0, the Red Wolves put up a valiant effort in the third set. A-State jumped out to an early 5-2 lead after a kill by Kendal Davis, but Western Kentucky fought back to tie it at 5-5 after a 3-0 run. The Red Wolves were able to gain a two point edge at 11-9 after a Lady Topper error, but the two teams found themselves tied at 15-15. WKU earned the next two points to take a 17-15 lead, but two straight points from A-State; capped by a Kelsey Sullivan kill tied the set at 17-17. The Lady Toppers regained the lead and stretched it out to two points at 20-18 before a Jackie Gerig kill and a block from Davis and Kelsey Reis tied the set at 20-20. Western Kentucky regained control by scoring the next two points to force an ASU timeout and then reeled off three straight points to finish the set on a 5-0 run and take the third game 25-20 and the match 3-0.
"Western Kentucky is a good team, but we gave them too much respect during the first two sets," A-State volleyball coach David Rehr said. "We started playing two sets too late and it's hard to overcome that."
Sullivan led the Red Wolves in kills with nine during the match, while Gerig dished out 23 assists. Defensively, Megan Baska led A-State with 11 digs and Kelsey Reis had three blocks.
Western Kentucky raced out to an 11-5 lead in the first set, but A-State clawed its way back to within two points at 13-11 after a Markie Schaedig service ace. The Lady Toppers would go on to end the set on a 12-3 run to earn a 25-14 first set victory. The second set started off evenly with the score being tied at 7-7 and A-State only trailed by two at 14-12 after a WKU service error. The Lady Toppers began to separate themselves by going on a 5-0 run to set the score at 19-12 and ended the set on an 11-4 run to take a 25-16 game two victory.
Arkansas State returns to action Wednesday, Oct. 23 against Arkansas-Pine Bluff at 7 p.m. in the Convocation Center. The contest against UAPB represents A-State's "Pink Game" to help raise breast cancer awareness and support cancer research.