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The Battalion

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

The Battalion

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

The Battalion

Graduate P Shaylee Ackerman (10) pitches during Texas A&Ms game against Valpo on Feb. 10, 2024 at Davis Diamond.
Holding down the house
February 22, 2024
Graduate P Shaylee Ackerman (10) pitches during Texas A&Ms game against Valpo on Feb. 10, 2024 at Davis Diamond.
Holding down the house
February 22, 2024

A&M sweeps Tennessee at Reed

Photo+By+Vanessa+PenaJunior+Angela+Lowak+prepares+for+a+spike+against+Tennessee.+%26%23160%3B

Photo By Vanessa Pena

Junior Angela Lowak prepares for a spike against Tennessee.  

The Texas A&M volleyball team swept the Tennessee Volunteers in straight sets 25-21, 25-14, 25-23 at Reed Arena Sunday.
After a 3-1 victory over Ole Miss a week prior, the Aggies (17-8, 9-5 SEC) came in fresh off a bye week and found themselves unranked for the first time since crawling into the polls in early September. The Volunteers (8-21, 1-14) arrived in College Station reeling from a five-game losing streak.
A&M distributed the ball well in the first set, led by sophomore setter Kaysie Shebeneck, who assisted on 12 of her team’s 15 kills. Freshman libero Amy Nettles spearheaded the defensive effort by running down seven digs. Sophomore Jazzmin Babers added three crucial blocks down the stretch to help seal her team’s victory in the opening frame. Texas A&M held Tennessee to a .150 hitting percentage and to take the opening set in its sixth straight match.
Building on the momentum generated in the first set, the Aggies steamrolled Tennessee 25-14 in the second set despite trailing early on. Tennessee committed eight errors and saw its hitting percentage drop to a paltry .101.
In the third set, Tennessee managed to generate a 11-5 advantage over the Aggies. However, a 10-3 run by the home team put A&M back in it. The third set proved to be the most tightly contested with both teams trading blows until A&M called a timeout down 20-19. From there the Aggies outscored Tennessee 5-3 to end the set and the match on a kill by freshman Ashlie Reasor.
Shebeneck was starting in the place of injured setter Stephanie Aiple, and she finished with 38 assists, four digs and six blocks.
“When Stephanie got injured, it was a no brainer to go with Kaysie,” head coach Laurie Corbelli said. “She has a level of commitment that’s rarely seen at the collegiate level. It’s such a treat to have someone like her on our team. I knew the day I met her that she would be that kind of player and teammate. Kaysie is the kind of setter who likes to run different things and think out of the box a little bit. I like that about her. She likes the variety and she likes to keep the other team guessing. That’s one of the things she does best.”
Babers, who leads the SEC in conference hitting percentage, finished with nine kills and tied Shebeneck for a match-high six blocks. Babers was one kill away from tallying double digit kills for her ninth straight match. Reasor, whose shot ended the match, led all player with 10 kills.
“I feel extremely comfortable with all my hitters,” Shebeneck said. “Ashlie did extremely well today and she deserved to get the ball. She did phenomenally.”
Shebeneck credited Babers with her success in the blocking game.
“That’s all because of Jazzmin Babers,” Shebeneck said. “She is such a good blocker. I feel comfortable going up with her every time.”
A&M bested Tennessee in almost every statistical category. It outhit the Volunteers .312 to .164, had 12 more digs (58 to 46), and finished with eight more kills (46 to 38).
“The team was phenomenal today,” said Shebeneck. “The team prepared hard and handled adversity extremely well. That just gives you so much confidence as a teammate. Team was the defining narrative today.”
The Aggies next match is Wednesday against the Arkansas Razorbacks in Fayetteville, Ark. The Hogs upset the Aggies 3-1 in Reed during their first meeting on Oct. 15th. First serve is at 6 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on the SEC Network.

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