FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- On Friday, Sept. 15, the University of Houston volleyball team battled No. 23 ranked Michigan for almost two-and-a-half hours before finally falling by a score of three games to two, 6-15, 15-7, 14-16, 15-8, 15-13, at the Bank of Fayetteville Invitational in Arkansas. It is the second week in a row the Cougars came up just-short in a big opening match of a weekend tournament.
Last Friday Houston dropped a close 3-2 decision to Tennessee in a tournament-opener on the road in Knoxville, including a 17-15 finale in the rally-scored fifth game. In Fayetteville the Cougars again had a chance to start the weekend with a big win, but lost the fifth game despite not making any hitting errors in rally scoring. The teams traded points back-and-forth from 8-7 to 13-12, but a UH blocking error gave the nationally-ranked Volverines a 14-12 lead.
Houston senior hitter Jennifer Wittenburg then spiked her tournament record-tying 27th kill of the match to make the score 14-13 with UH serving for a chance to tie the game for a ninth time, but Michigan was able to convert an attack attempt for a 15-13 final. Wittenburg finished with 27 kills and established a new school record for defensive digs in a single match with 34. Seniors Michelle Frazier and Stephanie Heiskell meanwhile both added 10 kills each.
The Cougars fell to 4-3 overall while Michigan improved to 6-1. Houston will next face tournament host Arkansas on Saturday morning followed by an evening match against Virginia. All four teams in the Invitational advanced to the NCAA Championship Tournament last season.
College Volleyball Linescore Bank of Fayetteville Classic - Fayetteville, Arkansas Houston 15 7 16 8 13 Michigan 6 15 14 15 15 Kill Leaders Jennifer Wittenburg (UH) 27; Nicole Kacor & Sarah Behnke (UM) 22; Records Houston (4-3); Michigan (6-1);