DALLAS – Jordyn Vaughn delivered 11 kills, but Arkansas hit .295 and picked up a straight-set win, 3-0 (25-17, 25-20, 25-15) over Sam Houston State on Friday at Moody Coliseum in the opener of the SMU Doubletree Classic.
Vaughn was the lone Bearkat (3-8) to reach double figures in kills, needing 30 swings to do so, while Taylor Cunningham was right behind her with nine. The junior hit .304 for the day and added a pair of blocks, but was one of just two Sam Houston state hitters to finish with more than five kills.
The Kats would also get seven digs apiece from Vaughn and Addison Miller, while freshman Courtney Littlefield had five kills along with a hand on thee of Sam’s five blocks for the day.
In all, Sam Houston hit just .118 for the match while the Razorbacks (9-2) continued their hot start to the season with .295 hitting, led by a match-high 15 kills from Pilar Victoria.
The Bearkats will close out the SMU Doubletree Classic on Saturday with a 1 p.m. first serve against TCU. Fans can follow via live stats at GoBearkats.com or get updates by following @BearkatsVB on Twitter.
Two early kills and an ace from Vaughn had the Kats off and running in Set 1, jumping out to a 6-4 lead before Arkansas got going. The Razorbacks surged ahead, taking a 9-8 lead on a block and went on to stretch the lead out to 17-12 on a Bearkat misfire that forced a timeout. Vaughn would have three of her 11 kills in eth set, but SHSU was only able to hit .086 for the frame, thanks in part to 4.5 blocks by the Razorbacks who would score eight of the final 11 points of the set.
Sam Houston would put together its best offensive set of the match in Set 2, but so did Arkansas who hit .312 behind seven kills from Victoria. The Hogs looked like they were going to cruise to an easy 2-0 lead, up 16-11, before the Kats clawed back. They did it defensively with three blocks in a span of five points, inching back to just a 17-16 deficit on a rejection by Littlefield and Jaclyn Ward. But Arkansas responded with five of the next six points and did just enough to hold the Kats off to go in up 2-0 at the break.
It did not take long for Arkansas to take command of the final set, running off six straight early points to open up an 8-3 lead that they would not relinquish. Cunningham managed to put home four kills with just one error in the set, but the Kats were hampered by three service errors and three Razorback blocks, dropping the set 25-15 despite finishing with more team kills (11) than Arkansas (10).