Oct. 15, 2010
Memphis, Tenn. - The University of Houston volleyball team snapped its five-match win streak with a 3-2 (25-16, 22-25, 25-18, 24-26, 15-17) loss to Memphis at Elma Roane Fieldhouse on Friday night.
The loss drops the Cougars to 11-9 on the season and 5-3 in Conference USA action.
"We blocked well tonight," head coach Molly Alvey said. "We were fairly disciplined across the front line and did a good job blocking."
With the opening play of the match putting the two teams in a 6-6 tie, Houston used a kill by Tryon and a Memphis attack error to take a two point lead setting the Cougars on a course to sail to a 1-0 lead in the match. UH held its opponents to a -.056 hitting percentage in the first set off eight kills. While Houston was only able to answer with eight kills from the other side of the net, they did so on a .227 clip.
Houston seemed to carry the momentum to the second set, jumping out to a 9-1 lead. Memphis, however, had other ideas and they quickly chipped away at the deficit to knot the set at 12-12. After trading points and tying the set again 18-18, the Tigers would eventually pull away to even the match at two sets apiece.
After the two teams came out of the intermission, Houston took an early 4-3 lead to start the third set. They pushed the lead to five, 9-4, forcing a timeout from the Tiger bench. The Cougars only used the break to regroup and they came off the bench to increase their led, 22-17. Memphis called a second timeout but UH would not be denied, coming out of the break to win the set, 25-18.
As they had in the second set, Houston took the early 6-1 lead. Once again Memphis did let the deficit get the best of them as they would slowly come back to tie the score at 23-23. The Cougars used a timeout to regroup but out of the break Memphis took its first lead and would go on to win a tough fought set, 26-24.
The Cougars was forced to play a five-set match for just the third time in 2010 after surrendering the fourth set.
Houston played to an 8-6 lead when the teams switched benches in the final set and only increased the lead 13-11, prompting a timeout from the Memphis bench. The Cougars came off the bench to score the first point and put themselves one point away from the win but the Tigers would answer scoring the next three points to tie the set. The two teams went on to trade points but it would be Memphis who would earn the win, sealing the victory off a kill by Altrese Hawkins and a Cougar attack error.
"We had three opportunities to win the match," Alvey added. "We took a 14-11 lead in the fifth set but committed some errors that cost us. Now we need to regroup, find more focus and be ready to go for UAB (on Sunday) immediately."
Houston will be back on the court Sunday at 1 p.m. against UAB. Following the road stand, the Cougars will be back in Houston for matches against Tulsa and SMU on Oct. 22-23. Both teams currently stand atop the league standings.