TAMPA, Fla. -- The University of Houston Volleyball program swept USF (25-23, 25-19, 28-26) on Friday afternoon inside The Corral.
With the decision, the Cougars improve to 10-13 on the season and 6-9 in American Athletic Conference play, while the Bulls fall to 10-15 overall and 5-10 in league action.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After the USF jumped out to a 3-0 lead, Houston took advantage of two USF errors and a kill from senior outside hitter Sarah Afflerbaugh to even the match. Later trailing 13-11, the Cougars went on a 7-1 run, highlighted by two kills apiece from freshman outside hitter Silvia Pertens and redshirt junior middle blocker Chenelle Walker, and capped with an ace from senior middle blocker Brianna Gardner, to take an 18-14 advantage. The lead never wavered en route to a 25-23 set victory.
In the second set, it was Houston that jumped out to a 3-0 lead before the Bulls rallied to even the match. Tied at 8-8, a set error gave the Cougars back the advantage and opened 6-2 run. Up 15-13, kills from Gardner and outside hitters Megan Duncan and Gabi Zelaya fueled a 4-0 surge, as Houston coasted to a 25-19 victory to take a 2-0 lead into intermission.
Duncan recorded six kills to highlight a team-best .366 clip in the stanza.
Houston set the tone out of the break, jumping out to a 10-4 lead. However, USF rallied late with a 5-0 run to take a 24-23 advantage. The two teams traded points to 26-all before a service error gave the Cougars back the advantage. Gardner sealed the match with an ace on the next serve to close the match in straight sets.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
• Duncan led all with 14 kills, her 12th time to lead the team on the season.
• Afflerbaugh finished with 11 kills and nine digs, while Pertens just missed double figures with nine kills.
• Walker recorded six kills and three blocks (all assisted). She has tallied at least three blocks in 14 matches in 2017.
• Gardner finished with six kills and a match-high three service aces.
• Setters Irvine and Keandra McCardell finished with 22 and 19 assists, respectively.
• Defensively, sophomore libero Katie Karbo finished with 20 digs, her 16th time to lead all players in digs on the season.
• Houston outhit USF, .325-.257.
• Houston’s 54 kills are its most in a three-set match on the season.
The Cougars will continue play in The American with a noon CT first serve at UCF on Sunday.
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.