Kentucky Volleyball began their 2018 NCAA Tournament by defeating Murray State 3-0 (25-18, 25-17, 25-19). Kentucky improves to 25-4 on the season and will play in Memorial Coliseum one more time, against Purdue in the Round of 32. The match will begin at 7:00 and the winner of the match will head to Minneapolis, Minnesota. UK or PU will play either #7 Nebraska or Mizzou at a time and date to be announced later.
2,885 people packed Memorial Coliseum for the match, which head coach Craig Skinner said helped give UK the advantage when it was needed the most. If you can make it out to the match vs. Purdue, I strongly urge you to attend because every person in attendance helps Kentucky have a home-court advantage.
Junior outside hitter Leah Edmond led the Cats with 17 kills, but the balanced offense made Kentucky versatile and kept Murray State on their heels. In her first-ever NCAA tournament, freshman outside hitter Alli Stumler had 12 kills and 15 digs, while senior middle blocker Brooke Morgan had 10 kills, 7 digs, and two blocks.
The defense was very clean and crisp, by limiting errors and allowing setter Madison Lilley to control the pace of the game. Kentucky came out without any jitters or worries and did the fundamentals correctly. This opened multiple opportunities for risky serves, different plays, and various formations on serve receipt.
Kentucky fell behind early in every set, but kept clawing their way back, which led to the sweep of the Racers. Simply put, this Kentucky team is clicking at the right moment is firing on all cylinders. If they keep up the pace of play and get their way offensively, then the team could make a long run in the tournament.