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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Aggies put win streak on the line against SEC-runner up Kentucky

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A&M volleyball

Texas A&M has not lost in the past 10 games — a streak that has catapulted them into the nation’s top-25 list, but will be challenged Wednesday by previous SEC-leader Kentucky in a Reed Arena showdown. 

No. 25 Texas A&M (19-6, 12-2 SEC) takes on the No. 19 Kentucky Wildcats (18-8, 11-3 SEC) at 9 p.m. Wednesday at home. The match is between the top-two teams of the SEC, and will play a large role in determining who will lead the conference in the final weeks of the season.

“To be able to play in front of the 12th Man and having that support that they bring is going to be amazing,” senior team captain Shelby Sullivan said. “We also have the best bench in the country, we have the best team supporting each other, it shows on the court. Our focus though is on one game at a time — not on the ranks, no one talks about that.”

In the two teams’ previous matchup, the Aggies were able to upset the then-No. 20 Wildcats on Oct. 30 in Lexington, Ky. to help bring A&M within reach of the SEC lead. A&M remained behind UK in the rankings until they clinched a win over Missouri to tie both UK and A&M at 9-2, giving A&M first place honors in the conference by tie-breaker. 

Sophomore setter Stephanie Aiple said the bond that they have as a team proves to be very helpful in big matches such as Wednesday’s against Kentucky.

“I think [our teamwork] demonstrates how hard we’re working off the court,” Aiple said. “Anytime we’re away from the court, that team camaraderie helps in situations where we’re struggling. When a lot of teams get down by too much, they can’t finish because they start pouting and getting into themselves.”

The Aggies were almost upset this past weekend on a Mississippi trip. A&M swept the Mississippi State Bulldogs, but not before suffering a scare in Oxford against the Ole Miss Rebels. The Aggies fired off in the first and third sets, but charges by the Rebels in the second and fourth sets pushed the match to a stressful fifth set. Fortunately for A&M, the Aggies were able to finish strong as they pulled off a 15-12 win in the fifth set over the overlooked Rebels.

“I think [beating the Rebels] was a blessing in disguise,” Ashlie Reasor said. “We’re sweeping teams, we’re playing really nice; I think obviously it was stressful, but it was good for us to have to go through that because I think we got a little comfortable beating teams in three [sets]. It’s good, especially at this time of the season, when we’re starting to go towards the end and battle back from something like that.”

First serve for the Texas A&M vs. Kentucky game will be at 9 p.m. Wednesday in Reed Arena. The match will be broadcast on SEC Network.

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