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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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Volleyball sets for match in Missouri

The Aggies finished its nonconference schedule with a win in straight sets against Houston Baptist Wednesday night and were able to utilize almost every player on the team. The win sends them into Big 12 Conference play with needed momentum to play some of the best teams in the country, starting with a match against Missouri.
Junior middle blocker Stephanie Minnerly said the team is excited to begin the conference schedule and show improvements in experience and in depth that they were so noticeably lacking last year.
“I think we have a huge, deep bench,” Minnerly said. “We are going out and focusing on us, and what we do on the court. If someone is not having a good game, someone else can come in and make a difference.”
Although Missouri is unranked nationally, the Tigers are 13-3 on the season and have recently proved a tough matchup for A&M.
Missouri sophomore hitter Lisa Hennings sets the pace for the Tigers with 3.60 kills per set, followed by outside hitter Emily Wilson and middle blocker Brittney Brimmage with 2.79 and 2.68, respectively.
Senior hitter Brittney Brimmage and setter Molly Kreklow were named to the preseason All-Big 12 team and have showed why they belong there. Kreklow has 10.53 sets per game, while Brimmage remains one of the biggest offensive threats in the conference.
For the Aggies, senior captain Kelsey Black is averaging 3.66 kills per set, while junior hitter Alisia Kastmo is swinging for 2.73 per game. Junior blocker Lindsey Miller is contributing 2.45 kills per set to the Aggies’ collective hitting percentage of .275.
The Tigers average just 12.9 kills per set in comparison to the Aggies’ 14.2.
Missouri struggles in serve reception, which could be a problem for them as A&M is an excellent serving team. The Aggies also appear to be a better defensive team, with more hitter coverage and digs per game.
The Aggies are looking for a rematch against a Missouri squad that defeated A&M in both contests last year. In their first meeting in College Station, the Tigers narrowly squeaked out a win in five sets.
“We have tweaked every part of our program this year and have a lot more experience going into Big 12 play,” head coach Laurie Corbelli said. “All of the five set matches just kept haunting us, but maturity is going to be a big part in conference play and I think we are going to be much more balanced.”
When the teams met again in November at the Hearnes Center in Columbia, the Tigers swept the Aggies in straight sets. Although it is a difficult place to play, senior education major Lynsi Bain said fans are confident in the team’s ability.
“This team has been so much fun to watch,” senior education major Lynsi Bain said. “They’re playing really strong, and I think they will only get better from here. “

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