Austin, Texas - Playing in front of almost 2,000 Longhorn fans, Santa Clara fell 3-0 to No. 8 Texas in the first match of the Time Warner Cable Texas Invitational. Texas won 25-13, 25-23 and 25-19.Saturday the Broncos will play University of Texas-San Antonio (UTSA) at 7 am (Pacific) before finishing the tournament with a 2:30 pm (Pacific) match vs. SMU later that afternoon. Santa Clara is 3-6 and Texas is 4-3, fresh off defeating four-time defending champion, then-No. 2 Penn State, 3-2 last weekend at Stanford.
"Texas is a really good team and I thought they played near perfect in game one. I thought we played pretty steady in game two. We had a swing to go up 24-22 in game two. I am pleased with the way the girls played: their intensity, their alertness, their ability. The key is whether we can build on it and bring it at 9 am tomorrow (7 am Pacific)," Bronco head coach Jon Wallace. "I don't think we were intimiated by the crowd, it was more of a postive for us with the energy. Tanya Schmidt really opened things up for us. As a team we played better: we passed better, we defended better. Everybody played a lot better and it was a total team effort. I told the team afterwards we had to build on it, we have to feel the energy of that and continue it. We feel like we can play well if we have attention to detail, alertness and discipline. It's a big match tomorrow vs. UTSA. They are a good team so we have to come out and play really well early in the morning."
Santa Clara hit .127 with 40 kills (26e, 110 att.). They collected 42 digs, 39 assists, 1.5 team blocks and one ace. Texas hit .286 with 36 kills (10e, 91 att.). They collected 39 digs, 32 assists, 11 team blocks and five aces.
Individually Santa Clara was led by Katherine Douglas' eight kills. The Broncos had a trio of players with seven kills: Kaleigh Durket, Taylor Milton and Tanya Schmidt. Dana Knudsen had six kills. Alyssa Anderson had 21 assists and six digs. Alexandra Palmer scored 11 assists and five digs. Bridget O'Hara had 13 digs.
For Texas Haley Eckerman had 15 kills, hitting .406 with five block assists. Rachael Adams collected six kills. Khat Bell and Bailey Webster scored five kills each. The Texas setters had 17 assists (Hannah Allison) and 12 assists (Michelle Kocher). Sydney Yogi had a team-high 12 digs. Adams and Eckerman both had five block assists.
Texas won the first set 25-13. In the first set Santa Clara led early 1-0 on a kill by Schmidt in the middle. After the Longhorns went up 7-2, coming out of a Bronco timeout, Douglas knocked down a kill. Adams picked up her first kill of the game to take an 8-2 lead. Santa Clara scored three of the next five points on a kills by Kaleigh Durket, another by Schmidt, an error by Texas. Texas scored five traight to take a 15-5 lead. Timeout Santa Clara. Knudsen crushed a kill to the back-row coming out of the huddle, but Texas respoinded with three more points to go up 18-6. Knudsen and Durket laced up back-to-back kills. The Longhorns continued to show why they are top eight in the country by soring three of the next five points. Santa Clara scored three of the next four points with Douglas, Schmidt and Durket scoring with Texas up 22-11. A Milton kill was followed by a Bronco error and a kill by Webster to give the Longhorns the set 25-13. Santa Clara hit .138 with 12 kills (8e, 29 att.). The Longhorns hit .458 with 12 kills (1 e, 24 att.) and four team blocks.
Texas won the second set, coming back late, 25-23. In the second set, kills by Milton and Schmidt put the Broncos up early, 2-1. Schmidt and Eckerman traded kills to it it up 3-3. Kayla Lommori and Knudsen scored on back-to-back kills, but the Longhorns responded with a team block, 5-4. Lommori's kill followed a service error and a Longhorn kill to tie it 6-6. Megan Anders knocked it down in back row to put SCU up 7-6. Texas scored six of the next 10 to go up 12-10. Attack errors by both teams, a service ace by Milton, a Longhorn ball handling error and a block solo by Knudsen tied it up 14-14. A team block by Knudsen and Durket put the Broncos up by one. After a media timeout, the team's traded points twice with Durket's kill and a Longhorn error giving SCU an 18-17 lead. A Bronco service error followed another Eckerman error and a Milton kill to put SCU up 20-18. Timeout Texas. Coming out of the Longhorn timeout, Taylor crushed it, 21-18 Broncos. Eckerman's kill stopped the rally, 21-19 Broncos. Texas rallied to tie it up 21-21 and then Douglas' kill made it 22-21 Broncos. The Longhorns scored three of the next four points to take a 24-23 lead. Timeout Santa Clara. An ace by Longhorn Michelle Kocher gave Texas a 25-23 set win. Santa Clara had 14 kills, hitting .147 (9 e, 34 att). Texas had 11 kills, hitting .240 (5 e, 25 att.).
Texas won game three 25-19. Both teams kept it close for a long time, tying it up 10 times, including a dump by Alexandra Palmer to make it 6-6. The Broncos took an 8-7 lead on a kill by Durket and an error by the Longhorns. A Knudsen kill gave the Broncos a 9-8 lead, but Adams tied it up for the ninth time to make it 9-9. A kill by Douglas and a Texas team block made it 10-10. Texas scored five of the next six to go up 15-11. After a media timeout Lommori hit the ball out to put Texas up 16-11. The teams traded points before Texas scored a point on a Bronco error, 18-12 Texas. Timeout Santa Clara. Back-to-back kills by Douglas and Durket and a Longhorn made it 18-15 Texas. Lommori's ball bounced out of bounds to give Texas the side-out, 19-15 Texas. Santa Clara collected four of the next six to trail by three, 22-19. Eckerman's kill hit pay dirt and then Yogi's ace made it 24-19. Timeout Broncos. Eckerman's kill was a match winner, 25-19. Santa Clara collected 14 kills, hitting .106 (9e, 47 att.). Texas scored 13 kills, hitting .214 (4 e, 42 att.).