Volleyball bounces back from upset, beats Kansas in second leg of Sunflower Showdown

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Redshirt sophomore Holly Bonde goes up for a kill during K-State's five-set victory over Kansas on Friday night. (Photo Courtesy of Natalie Hammer | The University Daily Kansan)

The No. 11 ranked Kansas State volleyball team defeated Kansas on Friday in five sets (22-25, 25-21, 25-19, 17-25, 15-10) in the season series finale of the Sunflower Showdown.

The Jayhawks (2-8) carried over momentum from the previous game into Friday’s match, taking the first set 25-22 – but the Wildcats (6-4) responded by taking the next two sets. KU took the fourth, which sent the match into a winner-take-all fifth set.

Friday’s match marked the sixth time this season that K-State played in a five-set match. The team has won four out of those six matches.

K-State was able to find momentum early in the last set, distancing themselves from Kansas with a safe margin — they would go on to win the set, 15-10.

Errors would almost come back to haunt the Wildcats yet again, with the team committing 44 on the night — most notably 24 hitting errors and 11 receiving errors. However, as a team, K-State would go on to outhit the Jayhawks .250 to .201 (61-55 kills) and outdig them 73-57. K-State also recorded 11 blocks on the night.

Individually, freshman Aliyah Carter led the match with 23 kills on .220 hitting. Redshirt sophomore Holly Bonde also recorded double-digit kills with 10. Freshman Kadye Fernholz had nine kills of her own.

On the receiving end, freshman Mackenzie Morris led the team with 18 digs. Junior Jacque Smith added 14.

For Kansas, senior Jenny Mosser had 21 kills, pacing the team.

K-State will continue its road trip next Friday at Texas Tech in Lubbock, Texas. The first match of the series will start at 3 p.m. and will be available on audio through KMAN radio, the second match will be available on Big 12 Now on ESPN+.

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