Sept. 1, 2012
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Mizzou volleyball team won the Lipscomb Invitational after defeating Appalachian State, 3-0 (25-13, 25-13, 25-10), on Saturday afternoon. The win improves the Tigers to 6-1 on the season and 3-0 in the tournament. Juniors Molly Kreklow (Delano, Minn.) and Lisa Henning (Blue Springs, Mo.) and sophomore Whitney Little (Keller, Texas) were named to the All-Tournament Team with Kreklow earning MVP honors. Sophomore Taylor Simpson (Colorado Springs, Colo.) had 11 kills on .346 hitting in the win over Appalachian State while the Tigers played well defensively, limiting the Mountaineers to just .038 hitting on Saturday.
"I was happy with our performance all weekend," head coach Wayne Kreklow said after the match. "The challenge with the match today was coming back after playing so well last night against Lipscomb and I thought we came out focused and ready to play. Appalachian State did a nice job of keeping balls up in the first set, but I liked the way that our hitters just continued to swing and really took control of the match over the last two sets."
Recapping Saturday's match, the Tigers played very well defensively, pulling in 55 digs in three sets while posting eight total blocks. Simpson was the main force offensively on Saturday, but Henning was good as usual with nine kills on 24 swings while Little pitched in nine kills on .250 hitting. For the tournament, both Henning and Little were very good. Henning hit .245 while posting 38 kills and getting the majority of the Tiger swings. She also led the team with 11 blocks, dug 29 balls and served a team-best six aces. Little hit .312 with 20 kills and 10 blocks over the three matches as well.
Kreklow ran the Tiger offense very well en-route to Tournament MVP honors as she guided the team to a .275 attack percentage while averaging 10.65 assists per set and pulling in 29 total digs. She just missed a double-double against Appalachian State with 30 assists and nine digs. Simpson and Regan Peltier (Nixa, Mo.) could have easily landed on the All-Tournament team as well, but the Tigers were allowed just three spots. Simpson had 21 kills on .281 hitting for the tournament while Peltier was second on the team with 23 kills on a team-best .352 hitting over the three matches.
The Tigers won a very defensive first set running away, 25-13, as they did a nice job of continuing to swing hard despite 30 digs from the Appalachian State back row, including 14 from libero Courtney Rhein. But Mizzou was equally as impressive in the back, pulling in 29 digs while posting five blocks. Little and Simpson each had four kills in the first set to lead the team. The Tigers held the Mountaineers to just six kills on 49 attacks in the first. Mizzou had 16 kills on 55 swings.
After a very defensive first set, Mizzou took the second set, 25-13, in large part because of a potent attack that hit .452 in the second set with 16 kills and just two errors on 31 swings. The efficient offense was thanks to Simpson who had seven kills on 12 attacks without an error in the frame. After seeing Appalachian State pull in 30 digs in the first, the Tiger offense limited them to just 13 in the second set.
The third set was all Tigers as they ran out to a 22-3 lead before making mass subs and taking the foot off the gas. They ended up winning, 25-10, clinching the match. Mizzou will be back in action next weekend as it heads to the Morehead State Invitational. For all the latest on Mizzou volleyball, stay tuned to MUTigers.com and follow the team on twitter @MU_Volleyball.