ARLINGTON, Texas - In a match befitting cross-town rivals, the North Texas volleyball team downed UT Arlington in five sets to notch the best start in school history (24-26, 25-21, 19-25, 25-17, 15-10).
The Mean Green (5-0) landed 14 blocks on the day - its most since 2009 - none bigger than Courtney Windham's solo effort in the fifth set that ended the match. The junior notched 20 kills on .318 hitting and six blocks in the victory.
Carnae Dillard matched Windham's efforts with 20 kills and five blocks, while libero Shelby Tamura logged a career and match best 33 digs, which ties for the sixth most in school history.
"I am proud of the way this team dug in and persevered," said North Texas head coach Ken Murczek. "We didn't play our best tonight, but the team got into a rythm in the fourth set and didn't give it up. It was nice to see us battle against such a tough team. This was a heck of a team we played tonight."
In the fifth and deciding frame, Dillard helped give NT a 4-0 lead that it wouldn't relinquish. Windham found a hole in the UTA (2-2) backline to make it 7-3 Mean Green, and moments later she scored the solo block that ended the match.
NT out-killed (70-51), out-dug (88-75), out-hit (.167-.109) and out-blocked (14-10) the Mavericks, but untimely attack errors kept UTA in the match. In losing the first and third sets NT recorded 13 and 11 errors. The Mean Green averaged just 4.3 errors in the three sets it won.
The Mean Green will travel to Indianapolis, Ind., this weekend for the IUPUI Invitational, which starts Friday.