Tennessee snaps Mizzou volleyball’s winning streak in 3-1 victory

The Tigers’ 30 attacking errors led to the team’s first loss since Sept. 20.

Maneater File Photo

Mizzou volleyball’s five-match winning streak came to an end against the Tennessee Volunteers in Knoxville, Tennessee, on Sunday. The 3-1 loss dropped the Tigers to 5-2 in the Southeastern Conference and 12-8 overall.

Mizzou let a 20-18 lead in the first set slip away, as three attacking errors from the Tigers in the last nine points allowed the Volunteers to steal the set 25-22. It was Mizzou’s first lost set since Sept. 29 against Auburn.

Tennessee carried the momentum into the second set, which it won 25-20. In the third set, redshirt senior Kira Larson got Mizzou off to an early 11-3 lead after serving for 10 straight points. The Tigers would hang on to win the set 25-17, and it looked like they finally had a foothold in the game.

However, it would not last, as four consecutive Mizzou errors gave the Volunteers a 10-6 lead in the fourth set. The Tigers clawed their way back, and senior Sydney Deeken’s 11th kill of the match gave her team a 16-15 lead. But three Mizzou errors in the ensuing four points gave the momentum back to Tennessee. The set ended 25-21 in favor of the Volunteers, and the Tigers lost their first match in almost a month.

Errors were the biggest factor in the game. Although Mizzou had 58 kills in the match to Tennessee’s 51, its 30 attacking errors neutralized much of the offensive threat that had blown away the previous five opponents.

“We weren’t real sharp today,” head coach Wayne Kreklow said in a press release. “We’ll get back in the gym and work at getting better.”

Freshman Leketor Member-Meneh started the match over redshirt senior Melanie Crow and was the main focus off the Tigers’ attack. Member-Meneh led the team with 17 kills on .250 hitting. Larson also played well, registering 12 kills and 11 digs, while senior setter Courtney Eckenrode once again led the team with 29 assists.

The Tigers will face Georgia (2-5 SEC) at home on Friday, Oct. 20 in their next game. The first serve is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. CT.

Edited by Joe Noser | jnoser@themaneater.com

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