UNLV Volleyball extends to a five-game winning streak

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Scarlet & Gray volleyball girls huddle together in celebration after winning three sets against Washington State on Sept 4. Photo courtesy UNLV athletics.

UNLV swept their opponents in the Cornell Invitational. The Rebels participated in a triple-header match against Niagara University, Cornell University and Bucknell University where they finished the tournament with a 3-0 record.

Niagara University

In the first set, the Rebels had an early lead, 5-0. UNLV went on a 9-5 run. The Rebels had their largest lead of nine points in the set. UNLV won the first set 25-13.

In the second set, the score was fairly close, 9-7. The Rebels managed to go on a 13-5 run to lead 22-12 before earning the win, 25-12. 

Once again, the score was close in the third set with only a one point lead from UNLV. The Rebels increased their offensive intensity to go on an 8-1 run for another victory, 25-13.

The Rebels outshined the Purple Eagles in every category. The Rebels offensively had a total of 58 points (0.418), 39 kills, and 12 aces compared to the Purple Eagles’ 23 points (0.012), 20 kills and two aces. 

Mariena Hayden led the team with 10 kills and six aces. Hayden is the all-time leader in aces in Mountain West history. Kate Brennan, No. 19 in the nation in kill percentages, had nine kills while freshman Chloe Thomas had seven kills. 

Defensively, Jordyn Freeman had four blocks alongside Thomas with three blocks and Brennan, who leads the team in blocks this season, with two.

Cornell University

The Rebels set the tone early going into the first set against Cornell with a strong lead, 15-5. Cornell didn’t let that discourage them and went on a 6-4 run, decreasing the lead to four. The set came down to the wire with the Rebels leading by one point, 24-23, but they still managed to win.

In the second set, the score was tied when UNLV managed to go on a 5-2 run, 16-13. Towards the end of the set, Cornell tied the score, 20-20. Cornell earned their first lead of the game, but it was quickly removed for another Rebel win, 25-23, with an impressive finishing offensive play. 

The Rebels took an early 11-5 lead in the third set. UNLV kept that momentum throughout the set for a 10 point lead, 21-11. UNLV went on a 4-3 run and won the set 25-14. 

Once again, the Rebels outshined in every category. UNLV offensively had 56 points (0.280), 41 kills and seven aces compared to Cornell University’s 46 points (0.128), 34 kills and five aces.

Hayden and Milica Tasic led the team with 11 kills and Freeman with six. Hayden and Shelby Capllonch led the team with two aces each, alongside Brennan with one ace. 

Defensively, Brennan had four blocks while Hayden and Freeman had two blocks each. 

Bucknell University

In the beginning of set one, the score was close with the Bisons putting up a strong offensive battle. However, UNLV went on a 6-0 run to win the set, 25-17.

The Rebels had an early 11-4 lead in the second set, but the Bisons didn’t let that affect them and went on a 7-3 run to cut the lead by three, 14-11. The Rebels pulled through to finish the set 25-18.

With the same strategy from the previous sets, the Rebels won the final set 25-7. UNLV had a total of 59 points (0.323), 43 kills and six aces versus the Bisons 22 points (-0.036), 18 kills and two aces. 

Hayden led the team with 12 kills and one ace, Tasic with eight kills and Brennan with five kills. Capllonch had five aces. Defensively, Brennan alongside Freeman and Gabrielle Arretche-Ramos with three kills each. 

Up Next

The Rebels will continue to play on the road and travel to Tempe, Arizona. to participate in the Sparky Volleyball Invitational on Sept. 17 and Sept. 18. 

The Rebels will face the University of the Pacific Tigers on Friday at 1 p.m. PT before facing the Arizona State Sun Devils at 5 p.m. PT on the Pac-12 Network. 

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