DALLAS -- The University of Houston Volleyball program battled but ultimately fell 3-0 (23-25, 23-25, 21-25) at SMU on Sunday afternoon inside Moody Coliseum.
With the decision, the Cougars fall to 4-6 on the season on 0-2 in American Athletic Conference play, while the Mustangs improve to 8-5 overall and 2-0 in league play.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After falling behind 6-1 early, Houston rallied, pulling within one point seven times, but was unable to overcome SMU in a 25-23, opening-set loss. Senior outside hitter Sarah Afflerbaugh registered five kills, while sophomore libero Katie Karbo recorded nine digs.
The second set proved to be the most contested of the match, as the two teams pulled even on seven points and swapped the lead four times. Tied 21-21, a Cougar attack error gave the Mustangs the advantage en route to another 25-23 win to take a 2-0 lead into intermission.
Out of the break, Houston stormed out to a 5-0 lead in the third set, highlight by two service aces from Afflerbaugh. However, SMU chipped away and took its first lead of the match at 17-16. Senior middle blocker Brianna Gardner quickly followed with a kill and service ace to retake a 18-17 edge, before a 6-0 run helped fuel the Mustangs to a 25-21 victory to close the match in straight sets.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Irvine posted her team-leading third double-double of the season behind an 18-assist, 10-dig effort.
Afflerbaugh led Houston with 10 kills and a season-high three service aces, while senior outside hitter Brianna Lynch registered nine kills.
Redshirt junior middle blocker Chenelle Walker and sophomore outside hitter Megan Duncan each finished with five blocks (all assisted), respectively.
Junior setter Katie Krebs finished with 10 assists and eight digs.
Defensively, libero Katie Karbo recorded a match-high 18 digs, her eighth time to lead all players in digs on the season.
The Cougars recorded eight blocks as a team.
The Mustangs outhit Houston, .198-.111.
The Cougars will continue play in The American and open a four-match homestand, welcoming UConn (Sept. 29), Temple (Oct. 1), Memphis (Oct. 6) and Wichita State (Oct. 8) to Athletics/Alumni Center.
The Houston Athletics Ticket Office is once again proud to offer the Shasta Pass for the 2017-18 season. For just $80, Cougar fans can purchase one Shasta Pass, which allows season-long general admission entrance to all Houston Volleyball, Soccer, Women's Basketball and Softball home games.
The Shasta Pass offers Houston fans a substantial saving as single-game tickets start at $5 for all four sports. To purchase a Shasta Pass, call 713-GO-COOGS or Click Here.
JOIN POINT HOUSTON CLUB
Fans can help support the Houston Volleyball program by joining the Point HOUSTON Club. To find out more information about the Point HOUSTON Club, visit UHCougars.com or call Cougar Pride at (713) 743-GOUH.