Rebels Unable To Hold Off No. 23 Kentucky In 3-2 Loss


LEXINGTON, Ky. Freshman Regina Thomas continued to play well for the Rebels on Sunday, notching 12 kills on the afternoon, but it wasn’t enough as Ole Miss (8-10, 4-5 SEC) fell to No. 23 Kentucky (18-3, 9-1 SEC) by a score of 3-2 (14-25, 29-27, 25-19, 16-25, 12-15).

Thomas led the way with her 12 kills and three blocks, while fellow middle blocker Miranda Kitts came up with nine kills and four blocks on the afternoon. Emily Kvitle moved into a hitting role for the Rebels, coming up with seven kills and 18 digs on the afternoon. Senior Allison Weber led the Rebels with 25 digs for the match.

Regina Thomas played well and we competed better as a team,” said Ole Miss head coach Joe Getzin. “I think that’s the key to our success, we have to compete hard and I was pleased with our efforts in that sense. Arkansas is a very good team and we’re going to have to be ready to turn around and be ready to go again in the quick turn-around for Wednesday and Friday.”

Kentucky set the tone early in the first set, jumping out to a 12-2 lead on the Rebels and never looked back. Ole Miss managed only four kills as the Wildcats stormed out to a 25-14 win in the first set to take the early lead in the match.

Ole Miss answered in the second set, coming out and taking a quick 5-2 lead on the Wildcats. Kentucky battled back to tie things at five, but the Rebels wouldn’t give up and hung with Kentucky down the stretch as the teams traded scores and leads. After falling behind 24-22, the Rebels scored three straight points to take the lead before going on to win the second set 29-27 on a kill from Regina Thomas and a Wildcat attack error.

The third set saw the Rebels jump out to a 4-1 lead, only to again see Kentucky tie things up as the squads battled down the stretch. The Wildcats cut the lead to one at 15-14, but a kill from Emily Kvitle pushed the Rebels back out by two. Ole Miss never trailed again and went on to claim the third set 25-19.

The two squads continued the tight contest to open the fourth set before Kentucky moved ahead 16-11 and pushed the Rebels into a timeout. Ole Miss was unable to slow down the Wildcat offense, however, as Kentucky pushed on to claim the fourth frame 25-16 and send the match into a deciding fifth set.

The Rebels and Wildcats played a tight contest in the fifth, with Kentucky coming out on the winning end as Ole Miss was unable to shut down the Wildcat rally. Kentucky claimed the fifth set 15-12 to take the match.

The Rebels will return to action on Wednesday, October 22, when Ole Miss will host Arkansas at 7 p.m. at the Gillom Sports Center.
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