The Wildcats enter the Lone Star Conference Championship as the No. 7 seed after wining their final two matches of the regular season.
The team will face No. 2 seed West Texas A&M University in the first of four first-round matches. The tournament begins Thursday and will be hosted by Angelo State who recently won their first conference championship since 1992.
Head coach Kellen Mock said WT is a program she always loves to play.
“The girls have some confidence going into that game because they know their capable of playing at their best against the Lady Buffs,” she said. “We play similar styles of volleyball.”
WTAMU finished second in the LSC with a 17-3 record – one of those losses came against the ‘Cats. Texas Woman’s University and Tarleton State University both finished with 15-5 records to make it into the top four. The bottom four are Texas A&M University-Commerce, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, ACU and University of the Incarnate Word.
“Our serve receive and defense will have to be spot on for us to beat WT,” Mock said. “We’ll also have to play good mentally.”
The first match is at noon Thursday, featuring No. 3 Tarleton State against No. 6 Kingsville, followed by the Wildcats and Lady Buffs at 2:30 p.m., No. 4 TWU against No. 5 Commerce at 5 p.m. and No. 1 Angelo State versus No. 8 Incarnate Word at 7:30 p.m.
All matches will be aired live on FoxSportsSouthwest.com free of charge. All webcasts will include both video and audio.
Friday, the ‘Cats traveled to Cameron University and defeated the Aggies 3-1 (25-22, 23-25, 25-18, 25-15). The team then made the trip to face Midwestern State University on Saturday where they beat the Mustangs 3-1 (18-25, 25-18, 25-16, 25-23).
After those wins, the squad ended the regular season with a 12-18 overall record (8-12 LSC).
The team dedicated the Cameron match to Rex Fleming, who is battling brain cancer. Each of the Wildcats wrote either ‘Rex’ or ‘P4X’ (Pray For Rex) on their wrists.
“It was cool to come out with a victory while playing for him,” freshman Corrie Reeder said. “A lot of us had an extra energy boost because we knew who we were playing for.”
Reeder had a career-setting game versus CU. She smacked 18 kills and had four block assists. Senior Kalynne Allen hit .448 and did not record an error.
“That was a lot of fun,” Reeder said. “Sarah and I got on a roll. There was a lot of connection between us in that game.”
“It was one of those days where she (Reeder) could do nothing wrong on the floor offensively,” Mock said.
Freshman Jennie Loerch whacked 11 kills and sophomore Sara Oxford had six kills and two block assists.
Setter Sarah Siemens also played a big role in the offense with 52 assists. Defensively, Madison Hoover and Madelyn Robinett combined to have 47 of ACU’s 83 digs.
Cameron was a really good offensive match for us,” Mock said.
Oxford and Allen led the team to victory against the Mustangs. Oxford put up 20.0 points with 16 kills and Allen recorded 17.5 points to go along with 15 kills.
Hoover led the action again on defense with 27 digs.
“We started really slow against Midwestern,” Mock said. “But that was the best I’ve seen our team adjust in a match. There were a lot of things we fixed from the first game to the second.”
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