K-State downed by Jayhawks in straight sets

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Junior opposite hitter Bryna Vogel is slow to get up after missing a point against KU during the Sunflower Showdown on Oct. 12, 2016, at the Horesji Family Athletic Center in Lawrence. The Wildcats lost 3-0. (Evert Nelson | The Collegian)

The Kansas State volleyball team was swept by the No. 6 Kansas Jayhawks on Wednesday night inside of Horejsi Family Athletics Center.

The Jayhawks hit .340 and held K-State to a hitting percentage of .190. K-State finished the match with 19 errors and was blocked nine times.

“They did just about everything very well tonight, quite frankly,” head coach Suzie Fritz said after the match. “I’m very disappointed because we need to coach them better, we need to play better and from the very beginning things just didn’t go our way.”

Kansas was led by junior outside hitter Madison Rigdon, who had 14 kills, while junior right side hitter Kelsie Payne and senior middle blocker Tayler Soucie each had 11.

The Wildcats were led in kills by sophomore outside hitter Alyssa Schultejans with 14 and senior middle blocker Katie Reininger provided nine.

“I thought she stayed high and challenged in productive ways,” Fritz said. “She moved it around and she stayed aggressive during the entire match.”

The first set did not start the way the Wildcats wanted as the Jayhawks jumped out to a 5-1 lead after four straight blocks for points.

Kansas won nine points in a row after the Wildcats won the first point to lead 9-1. K-State had nine attack errors in the first set while the Jayhawks only committed two. Kansas had 13 kills in the set and won it 25-15.

The Wildcats hitting percentage was .000 and Kansas hit a whopping .500 in the first set.

K-State had a 5-2 lead to start the second set, but Kansas won the next three points to tie it up at 5. Both teams went back and forth until the score was tied at 17 each. The Jayhawks won the next eight of 11 points to take the set 25-20 and a 2-0 lead.

The Jayhawks were led by Payne, who had seven kills in the set as Kansas had 31 as a team in first two sets of the match.

In the third set, K-State had a 6-4 lead, but Kansas won the next four points to take an 8-6 lead. Kansas wouldn’t lose the lead after that and won the set 25-23 as they swept the Wildcats in three sets.

“We got better as the match went on, but we started at such a low point it could only go up from there,” Fritz said. “We can’t let someone hit .350 and have any expectation of being in a match. We weren’t good defensively, we weren’t good offensively or in any other aspect.”

The Jayhawks are now a perfect 8-0 at home this season.

K-State played the majority of the match without sophomore outside hitter Kylee Zumach.

“We needed to make a change early in the match, and Schultejans went in and kind of held it down,” Fritz said.

Kansas improves to 16-2 and 5-1 in Big 12 play while the Wildcats are now 14-5 and 3-3 in conference play.

K-State will travel to Norman, Oklahoma, to face off against the Sooners on Saturday with first serve set for 6 p.m.

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