Oct. 5, 2012
HOUSTON-Rice defeated UTEP 3-0 on Friday to remain in second place in C-USA. Rice has now won 10 of its last 13 matches and five of its six in league play.
"It was great to win 3-0 and play another home match," said Rice head coach Genny Volpe. "We took UTEP of their rhythm with our block defense, which was our game plan."
"I was happy to see our team respond in that way. We need to have better production on the offensive side however," added Volpe. "Our defense tonight was the highlight with 14 blocks and 70 digs, that's 23.3 digs per set alongside those blocking numbers. We couldn't ask for more than that."
The Owls (12-8, 5-1 C-USA) and UTEP (10-8, 4-2 C-USA) played three tight sets that included 30 tie scores and 10 lead changes.
Nancy Cole led the Owls with 12 kills on .276 hitting. The senior from Duncan College posted seven blocks, her fourth straight match with 5 or more blocks.
Jillian Humphrey posted eight kills and seven blocks. She has posted five or more blocks in the past four matches as well.
Megan Murphy posted her fourth double double or triple double out of six C-USA matches. She had 35 assists, her eighth straight match with 30+ assists, and 12 digs.
Daniela Arenas led the Owls with 14 digs, and was joined in double digits by Murphy, Mariah Riddlesprigger, who had 11 digs and her fourth straight double digit dig game, and Kimberly Vaio, who had 11 digs as well.
The Owls took the first set by a 26-24 score, using four Cole blocks to take the advantage.
Rice hit .233 in the second set and received five kills from Cole to win 25-22.
Down 19-18 in the third set, Rice rattled off a 5-1 run to take a 24-20 lead and win the set 25-23.
The Owls host Tulane on Sunday, October 7 at 1 p.m. for its annual Dig Pink match.