DENTON, Texas—With a perfect Sun Belt Conference record on the line, the No. 20 Western Kentucky University volleyball team (19-3, 5-0 SBC) can add another win after defeating North Texas (17-7, 3-2 SBC) by a score of 3-0 (25-16, 25-18, 25-21)on Friday night at the Mean Green Volleyball Center.
Redshirt junior Paige Wessel and sophomore Heather Boyan tabbed double-digit kills with 12 and 11, respectively. Wessel had no attack errors on the night, as she hit .632 on 19 attempts. Senior Jordyn Skinner added nine digs and two service aces while junior Melanie Stutsman dished out 37 assists.
Freshman Noelle Langenkamp was a wall at the net with seven blocks in the contest, including five in the first set. Junior Ashley Potts put up 10 digs followed by Skinner’s performance with nine.
For North Texas, Courtney Windham had 12 kills while Carnae Dillard added 11. Dillard also tabbed three blocks with Windham notching two. May Allen put up 17 assists and four digs.
Out of the gates of the first set, the teams matched each other point-for-point. With eight tied scores leaving the teams tied at 12, two service errors by the Mean Green plus an ace from Engle and block from the duo of Stutsman and Boyan forced North Texas to call a timeout at 16-13. From the break, WKU outscored NT 9-3 en route to a 25-16 first set win.
With four different Lady Toppers grabbing kills early in the second set, WKU took off to a 6-2 advantage over NT. The Mean Green climbed back within one at 8-7 using a 4-1 scoring spree. Kills from Skinner, Langenkamp and Stutsman helped open the contest back up in WKU’s favor, as the team pulled ahead 13-9. The Lady Toppers’ offense kept increasing the lead, as WKU added five kills to get out front 19-11. After a trio of kills from Boyan, WKU would take the second set 25-18.
North Texas took the first point of the third set, but it wouldn’t take long for WKU to notch a 5-1 lead off of two Mean Green miscues and kills from Wessel, Langenkamp and freshman Haley Bodway. NT knotted the game at 6 apiece after outscoring WKU 5-1, but the Lady Toppers pulled away to a 13-9 lead and force NT to the benches. The Mean Green stayed competitive the rest of the set and got within two eight times before closing the gap even more at 22-21; however, WKU closed the set with a 25-21 win after two NT errors and a kill from Wessel.
WKU finishes its road trip on Sunday, October 7 at 1 p.m. against Louisiana-Monroe before returning home the next two weekends.