Wildcat volleyball wins five-set thriller against Texas Tech

Wildcats celebrate between points during K-State's 3-0 victory against Oklahoma this season. (Sophie Osborn | Collegian Media Group)

The No.11 ranked Kansas State volleyball team was forced to another five-set match on Friday against Texas Tech. K-State came out victorious, 25-16, 12-25, 25-15, 20-25, 17-15.

Neither team could gain much traction throughout the match, which caused the wide point disparity throughout the sets. This was partially due to 80 combined errors from both teams — 40 from each team.

The final two sets were much more competitive — and the final set became a thriller. When all hope seemed to be lost for the Wildcats down three points, and Texas Tech on match point, Suzie Fritz’s team battled back with an 8-3 run to win the match.

“One of the things I like most about this team is their competitiveness, and I think it really showed up late when we really needed it,” Fritz said in a release to K-State Athletics. “Abigail Archibong brings a great deal of competitiveness. Holly Bonde showed incredible composure down the stretch and Jayden Nembhard came in and played incredibly well. And our liberos made some really significant plays late in the match that gave us opportunities to score. They showed really nice composure, I think right now it’s just about consistency.”

Freshman Nembhard led the team with 14 kills on .257 hitting for the night. Redshirt sophomores Bonde and Archibong combined for 19 kills. Freshman Mackenzie Morris tied a career-high with 24 digs on Friday.

Freshman Aliyah Carter, who has been the team’s leading scorer this season, struggled to find her footing against the Red Raiders. She tallied just one kill on 12 attempts and only played in two sets.

Fritz wants to see more consistency out of her team on Saturday in the final match of the doubleheader.

“I think Texas Tech is a good volleyball team, first,” Fritz said. “I think they dig a lot of balls and I thought they served us exceptionally well. But we felt some pretty extreme ebbs and flows. We would hit .400 in game three and then in game four we’d hit .160. I think for us, right now, is just a matter of consistency because I think when we play really good volleyball, we can play with anybody.”

The Wildcats are back in action for the series finale against Texas Tech at 1 p.m. on Saturday. The action will be broadcasted on Big 12 Now on ESPN+, with live audio through KMAN radio.