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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

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A&M volleyball breaks losing streak with 3-0 sweep of Ole Miss

Senior+OH+Caroline+Meuth+%2816%29+spikes+the+ball+during+Texas+A%26amp%3BMs+match+against+Ole+Miss+on+Wednesday%2C+Nov.+22%2C+2023+at+Reed+Arena.+%28Ishika+Samant%2FThe+Battalion%29
Photo by Ishika Samant

Senior OH Caroline Meuth (16) spikes the ball during Texas A&M’s match against Ole Miss on Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2023 at Reed Arena. (Ishika Samant/The Battalion)

Texas A&M volleyball’s sophomore outside hitter Lexi Guinn entered the Aggies’ match against Ole Miss with just a single kill on the year in nine sets of play.
But with A&M missing offensive staples sophomore middle blocker Ifenna Cos-Okpalla and freshman outside hitter Bianna Muoneke, it needed someone to step up.
Guinn was more than happy to oblige, ending the night with eight kills as A&M broke its four-game losing streak with a 3-0 sweep of Ole Miss in the Aggies’ last match of the year at Reed Arena, which they hope will improve their case with the NCAA Selection Committee.
“I thought we let our play flow today and didn’t force anything,” coach Jamie Morrison said. “We were down at some points but never panicked. It’s important to stay focused throughout the entire match, and I thought we did a really great job of that today.”
Five of Guinn’s kills came in the first set, where A&M handily defeated the Rebels 25-15 — a performance aided by an Ole Miss offense that hit -0.062 and had nine attacking errors in the period.
Things improved for the Rebels in the second set, as they hit 0.257 during the period and were able to take an early lead on the Aggies before A&M pulled away late for a 25-22 set win.
The Rebels’ offensive success largely can be credited to junior outside hitter Julia Dyess and senior middle blocker Sasha Ratliff, who each came into the match as one of seven Rebels with over a hundred kills on the year. Dyess led all scorers with 13 kills, while Ratliff added seven to go along with her four blocks.
To its credit, A&M was able to keep the ball away from the hands of Ole Miss’ senior outside hitter Anna Bair, who ranks second in kills on the Rebels’ squad as she hit -0.227 and finished with just one kill against the Aggies.
It was in the second and third sets that A&M’s veterans were able to help the Aggies pull away. After Guinn took the early lead, A&M sophomore opposite hitter Logan Lednicky and graduate outside hitter Caroline Meuth each had 10 kills.
Both Lednicky and Meuth benefited from the play of A&M assist leader junior setter Nisa Buzlutepe’s 26 assists — the final 2 points of A&M’s 25-21 win in the third set were kills by Lednicky off of assists from Buzlutepe.
Ole Miss ends its season at 11-18 and 5-13 in the SEC, while A&M heads to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to face the last-place Alabama Crimson Tide in its regular season finale on Saturday, Nov. 25, as the Aggies look to safely secure their spot in the NCAA Tournament.

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About the Contributor
Ian Curtis
Ian Curtis, Sports Reporter
Ian Curtis is a journalism freshman from College Station, Texas. Ian has written about football, men's basketball, women's basketball, baseball, hockey, gymnastics, volleyball and more for The Battalion. Ian's work has also appeared in The Bryan-College Station Eagle and over the airwaves on WTAW and BCSball.com. 
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