North Texas Volleyball Takes Care Of Business On The Road
Despite A Hostile Environment, The Mean Green Sweep SFA In Three
NORTH TEXAS AT SFA BOX SCORE
NACOGDOCHES—North Texas easily powered by Stephen F. Austin on the road Monday night to take a three set victory and improve to 2-0 against Southland opponents on the season.
"What a great road win for us tonight against a good team," head coach Palileo said. "We came out aggressive and focused from the first point to the last."
The Mean Green traveled to Nacogdoches on a short turn around after a successful showing at home in the North Texas Invitational. There was little time to dwell on the heartbreaking five set loss to No. 15 Missouri on Friday night, before having to focus on the holiday weekend matchup with SFA Monday night.
North Texas showed no further let down after the narrow defeat, and came out firing aggressively in set one. Freshmen Alexis Wright had the hot hand early, recording five kills on a .556 attacking percentage in set one alone. She would later finish the match with 13 kills with an attacking percentage of .500, marking the second match in a row the young right side hitter has recorded a percentage above .500 with double digit kill totals.
"We had another great match from Alexis," Palileo added. "[That] combined with our solid defense and passing made for an efficient night."
After going cold in set one, junior Carnae Dillard led the Mean Green out to a 6-0 lead in set two, with four kills for Dillard in the first six points. SFA would storm back to put up a fight and knot up the set at 16 a piece. However, four straight attack errors by Stephen F. Austin Five of the last nine points in set two for North Texas were courtesy of attack errors by the Lady Lumberjacks. Every single one of those were needed to close out a much tighter set two at 25-21.
Eight errors by Stephen F. Austin in the third set spotted North Texas the lead, and the Mean Green never looked back. North Texas asserted their dominant presence, capitalizing on the inefficiency of the Lady Jacks, as they closed out the final set 25-17 to take the match in three.
Carnae Dillard finished with 16 kills and 10 digs, just barely continuing her streak of recording double-doubles in every match this season thus far. Sophomore Amy Henard also recorded a double double with 42 assists and 12 digs. She now has 152 assists in only 14 sets played this season. Senior libero Eboni Godfrey also accounted for 17 digs on the defensive side of the ball.
North Texas improves to 19-23 all-time against Stephen F. Austin, a series that dates back to 1976, the inaugural year of Mean Green volleyball. This marks the first time NT has defeated SFA in consecutive seasons since a stretch of victories from 1979-1982 under head coach Vickie Guy. The Mean Green defeated the Lady Lumberjacks during head coach Andrew Palileo’s first season last year, in three sets (25-19, 25-22, 25-22) at home in Denton.
The Mean Green return home tonight for a short week of practice before once again hitting the road to travel to San Marcos, TX for the Texas State Delta Zeta Classic. North Texas (3-1) takes on Wichita State (1-3) in the first match of the tournament on Friday afternoon at 5 p.m.