OXFORD, Miss. - Playing in front of 1,981 fans at Reed Arena in College Station, Texas, on Friday night, the Ole Miss volleyball team (6-4, 0-1 Southeastern Conference) fell 3-0 (25-21, 25-23, 25-16) to Texas A&M (9-1, 1-0 SEC) in the Aggies' inaugural SEC match.
Ole Miss was led offensively by junior outside hitter Kara Morgan, who had a team-high 12 kills. Senior setter Amanda Philpot recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 28 assists and 12 digs. Senior libero Ashley Veach also had a dozen digs in the loss.
"Hats off to Texas A&M for playing a very solid match tonight," Ole Miss head coach Joe Getzin said. "We competed well in sets one and two, and I think in set three we just kind of let our emotions get the best of us and we got a bit frustrated. Kara Morgan had a good attacking match for us."
Texas A&M won the first set by a count of 25-21. The Aggies led the set 23-15 at one juncture, but the Rebels rallied, going on a 6-1 run to pull it within 24-21. Texas A&M held on to finish the set with a kill by Alisia Kastmo, her fifth of the set.
After going back and forth and exchanging leads four times to start the second set, Texas A&M went on a 4-0 run to gain its biggest lead of the set at 20-16. The Rebels responded with a 5-2 run of their own, fueled by three kills from Allegra Wells, Kellie Goss and Kiley Sherman. Texas A&M held on for the win in the second set, though, topping Ole Miss 25-23 to take a 2-0 lead in the match.
Texas A&M finished off the match with a 25-16 victory in the third set. It was the Aggies' eighth straight victory, and sixth straight victory without losing a set.
Ole Miss will face another SEC newcomer Sunday afternoon in Columbia, Mo. The Missouri Tigers (9-2, 1-0 SEC) won their inaugural SEC match Wednesday evening against No. 17 Tennessee, 3-2. The Tigers trailed 2-0 after two sets and were down 20-15 in the third set, but rallied to win the third set 27-25 and each of the next two sets for the dramatic victory.
Offensively, junior outside hitter Lisa Henning paces the Tigers with 4.50 kills per set, receiving passes for many of those kills from junior setter Molly Kreklow, who has a team-high 10.68 assists per match. Sophomore libero Jade Hayes has a team-high 3.34 digs per set for Missouri.
For all Ole Miss volleyball news and information, including daily recaps, live stats and results, go to OleMissSports.com, follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissVB and go to Facebook at Ole Miss Volleyball.
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