Creighton Tops UK in Straight Sets, Hands Cats First Loss of Season

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Creighton Tops UK in Straight Sets, Hands Cats First Loss of Season

The University of Kentucky women's volleyball team celebrates a point during the first match of the Bluegrass Battle on Friday, August 25, 2017 in Lexington, Ky. Kentucky defeated Arkansas State 3-0.

The No. 13 Kentucky volleyball team was dealt its first loss of the season Friday night in straight sets (25-20, 26-24, 25-20) by the hands of the No. 7 Creighton Bluejays.

While the two teams were nearly even in statistics like kills, digs and assists, Kentucky’s inability to terminate the ball consistently proved to be their downfall. The Bluejays recorded 45 kills on a .353 hitting percentage for the match. And while the Cats also recorded 45 kills, their hitting percentage on the night was a measly .243.

Head coach Craig Skinner attributed Kentucky’s hitting problems to Creighton’s ability to keep UK in uncomfortable positions. However, Skinner was optimistic that his team will grow from such a tough match.

“Creighton caused us some problems and I think as we grow as a team over the next several weeks this will be a great match to pull from to figure out how we can keep getting better,” said Skinner.

Sophomore Leah Edmond and freshman Avery Skinner were bright spots for the Cats, as Edmond recorded her first double-double of the season with 18 kills and 11 digs and Skinner tallied a career-high 14 kills on 30 swings. Coach Craig Skinner was very pleased with the freshman’s ability to terminate the ball in such a tough environment.

Sophomore outside hitter Leah Edmond tips the ball over the net during the first match of the Bluegrass Battle on Friday, August 25, 2017 in Lexington, Ky. Kentucky defeated Arkansas State 3-0.

“Impressive performance from Avery (Skinner) to come out of her shell and get a little more comfortable. We saw her hit the shots we’ve seen her hit in practice and it was a great springboard opportunity for her,” said Skinner.

Freshmen Madison Lilley and Gabby Curry also had impressive performances for the Cats. Lilley recorded 40 assists for the second time this season, and Curry recorded her fourth double-digit dig total of the year with 14.

Kentucky will be back in action Saturday for two more games as a part of the Bluejay Invitational. UK will take on Northern Iowa at 11 am and No. 18 USC at 7 pm.

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