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No. 17 Kansas Drops Four-Setter at No. 8 Texas

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AUSTIN, Texas – The No. 17 Kansas volleyball team fell in a four-set heartbreaker (17-25, 25-16, 18-25, 22-25) at No. 8 Texas on Thursday night in Gregory Gym in Austin.

With the loss, Kansas moves to 12-3, 3-2 in Big 12 play, while Texas now posts 10-3 (5-0).

The first set got away from the Jayhawks despite going toe to toe with the Longhorns until the scoreboard read 4-5. Once Kansas fell victim to multiple errors in a row, Texas was able to capitalize, extending its lead as far as nine points at 8-17. The deficit was too large to return from even though Kansas showed some last-minute sparks.

Reagan Cooper got the Jayhawks going in set two with the first kill, and things began in a similar point-for-point fashion like the beginning of set one. At 3-3, Kansas would go on a five-point run to make it 8-3 and force a Texas timeout, which was huge for Jayhawk momentum. An ace from Raegan Burns and a block from London Davis and Toyosi Onabanjo would push the Jayhawks ahead two more points, and the Longhorns looked to close the gap once again. Texas looked rattled, however, stringing together multiple errors while the Jayhawks didn’t give up their comfortable lead for the duration of the set.

The Jayhawks started set three with the lead, but the Longhorns were ready to close in this time, going on a four-point scoring run to tie things up at 7-7, then pull away at 7-10. A Kansas timeout at 8-13 would lead to a slight shift in momentum, as back-to-back kills from Cooper and Mykayla Myers would close it up a bit at 10-13. Despite more big points from Cooper and Davis, the Jayhawks were unable to regain that lead, ultimately falling in the third.

Set four started off with five different ties until the Longhorns grabbed a two-point lead finally at 6-8. An Onabanjo kill kept the Jayhawks trailing by one, however, and the score would tie once again at 8-8. Texas would take it to 9-12 at one point, but Onabanjo was crucial in closing the gap back up with a kill and a solo block, and the score would read 11-12. From here, the Longhorns looked comfortable in the lead, and some late errors from Kansas would push Texas ahead 19-22. That’s when Ayah Elnady stepped up to the line and knocked down back-to-back aces, keeping the Jayhawks in it at 21-22 and forcing a Texas timeout. The Longhorns were able to slide by with the win, however, taking the fourth set by a mere three points.

Cooper ended the night with an outstanding 17 kills, while Davis posted nine and Elnady eight. Three Jayhawks recorded double-digit digs with Raegan Burns in the lead with 13, Caroline Bien right behind her with 12 and Camryn Turner contributing 11.

UP NEXT
The Jayhawks will return to Gregory Gym for another match against the Longhorns tomorrow night with the first serve slated for 7 p.m. CT. The contest will be televised on The Longhorn Network.

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