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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

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A&M volleyball remains undefeated against Mississippi State with sweep

Before Sunday, Texas A&M and Mississippi State had met four times in the school’s history, with the Aggies winning all four and not dropping a single set in the process.

The Aggies (12-6, 5-2) continued that domination on Sunday, sweeping the Bulldogs (13-8, 3-5) with relative ease in three sets at Reed Arena, winning 25-19, 25-18 and 25-15, respectively. It was A&M’s third straight victory and second consecutive sweep.

A&M head coach Laurie Corbelli said after the game that the team has improved its ability to finish games as the season has progressed.

“I think finishing comes along with confidence and a good strong focus,” Corbelli said to 12thman.com in her postgame press conference. “We say it about each skill: finish your skill. I think they’re really getting better at that with practice. I think it builds their confidence, because they’re seeing more success. I hope it carries over into more and more sets.”

On a Sunday that A&M hosted Military Appreciation Day, where all active or retired military personnel received free admission, the Aggies put on an absolute clinic against their conference opponent.

Senior Shelby Sullivan and junior Jazzmin Babers combined for 19 kills. Sophomore setter Stephanie Aiple led the team with 31 assists and sophomore Amy Nettles recorded 14 digs. Sullivan also contributed a game-high three blocks.

After the game, Sullivan talked about what it was that allowed the offense to fire on all cylinders in the final set.

“I think it was just when we are in a great rhythm — the defense was doing really well — our serve receive was allowing Stephanie [Aiple] to have a ton of options, and that is really when we can attack the other team,” Sullivan, who recorded seven kills in the third set, told 12thman.com. “She can go to anyone and is confident in our ability, and when we are in system, anyone is going to get the kill that Stephanie distributes it to.”

The Aggies had the Bulldogs on their heels from the opening serve. Mississippi State was forced to call its first timeout early in the first set after two aces by freshman Amy Houser, and then the Bulldogs had to regroup again that set after an ace by Nettles extended A&M’s lead to 18-11.

Ashlie Reasor, who led the team in kills through the first two sets, executed an off-speed kill to seal the first set for Texas A&M.

The second and third sets were more of the same for the Aggies, as they outplayed the Bulldogs in every facet of the game. Their .410 hitting percentage was their third-highest mark in SEC play so far, and they held the Bulldogs to a paltry .198 in that category, the third-lowest opponent percentage in SEC games.

With the win, the Aggies remain in third place in the conference standings, behind Kentucky and Missouri.
A&M will return to the court Wednesday at home against LSU. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m., and the match will be broadcasted on SEC Network+.

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