EL PASO, Texas - The Rice Owls volleyball team snapped a two-match losing streak with the team's sixth sweep of the season, defeating the UTEP Miners in three sets (25-21, 25-18, 25-19) Sunday afternoon at Memorial Gym.
Rice (14-7, 4-3) was led offensively by senior right side hitter Kyley Reed, who established a career-high with a match-best 15 kills on 26 attacks (.423) in her third start of the season. Junior outside hitter Leah Mikesky (14 kills) and freshman middle blocker McKay Kyle (13 kills) also contributed double-figure kills. Sophomore Madison McDaniel posted 37 assists in three sets while senior libero Kimberly Vaio led all players with 16 digs.
As a team the Owls hit just .208 but managed to hold the Miners to a .111 clip. Rice also limited the Miners (7-15, 1-7) to a 47 percent sideout rate.
"I was happy with our focus today," Rice head coach Genny Volpe said. "Our offense was clicking and Kyley played great. I thought Madison set well too. We still had too many errors that we need to clean up but overall it's always good to win in three, especially on the road."
Rice had their hands full with the Miners in the opening set but were able to break a 20-20 tie by outscoring UTEP 5-1 down the stretch for the 25-21 win. During that run McDaniel recorded two kills and assisted on another point while Reed posted a kill and a set-clinching block.
The Owls hit a match-high .289 as a team in set two en route to a 25-18 victory, using a 5-0 run to break open a 13-13 tie. During that span Reed and Kyle had two kills apiece. Out of the break Rice dominated the third and final set by holding the Miners to a .000 hitting percentage and never trailed after capturing a 7-6 advantage.
Rice will next be in action on Wednesday when they host North Texas in the annual Dig Pink match. First serve is set for 6 p.m.