Volleyball Uses Defensive Effort to Sweep Georgia

<i>Whitney Little posted her fourth career 10-block match on Sunday, matching the Mizzou school record. All of her career 10-block matches have come over the last eight.</i>

Whitney Little posted her fourth career 10-block match on Sunday, matching the Mizzou school record. All of her career 10-block matches have come over the last eight.

Sept. 30, 2012

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COLUMBIA, Mo. - Mizzou posted 15 blocks in a 3-0 (25-15, 25-23, 25-11) sweep of Georgia on Sunday afternoon (Sept. 30) at the Hearnes Center. The win improves the Tigers to 12-4 on the season and 4-2 in SEC play. The 15 blocks for Mizzou mark the fifth time in six SEC matches that the Tigers have posted at least 10 blocks while the main catalyst at the net was sophomore Whitney Little (Keller, Texas), who finished with a match-high 10 total blocks. The 10-block match for Little is her fourth in eight games as she matched the school record for 10-block matches in her career (four), tying her with former All-American Christi Myers. Little was also a force offensively with seven kills on .545 hitting.

Defense was the name of the game on Sunday as Mizzou limited the Bulldogs to just .030 hitting, the Tigers' best opponent hitting percentage against an SEC team this season. In all, the Tigers finished with 15 blocks and forced 28 attack Bulldog attack errors in the win. After Sunday's blocking effort, Mizzou is now averaging 3.45 blocks per set in SEC play, by far a league-best this season.

"I was pleased with the way that we responded after Friday night," head coach Wayne Kreklow said. "I thought we were still a little sloppy at times, but I was pleased with the way we responded. I thought we blocked really well in the first set and that sort of set the tone for the rest of the match."

Aside from Little, who finished with 14.0 points in the match, junior All-American Lisa Henning (Blue Springs, Mo.) was also sensational with 12 kills on just 20 swings, tallying 15.0 points on .500 hitting. She also joined the block party with four, just one off of her season-best in that department. Henning also corralled a team-best 10 digs on the match, finishing with her fourth double-double of the season.

Offensively, Mizzou was not able to get a lot of swings due to the amount of attack errors from the Bulldogs as they had just 85 in the three sets. Taylor Simpson (Colorado Springs, Colo.) finished with six kills while freshman Regan Peltier (Nixa, Mo.) added five more kills. Sophomore libero Sarah Meister (San Deigo, Calif.) had her streak of five-straight matches with at least 10 digs snapped, but she did finish with seven digs, good for the second-best total on the team. Junior Molly Kreklow (Delano, Minn.) was very good as well, posting four kills on seven attacks while spreading 30 assists with five blocks and two digs as she continues to do it all for the Tigers this season.

Mizzou opened the match by limiting UGA to just -.079 hitting in the first, tallying five blocks and forcing 13 Bulldog attack errors as it ran away with the first set, 25-15. The second set was much closer as Georgia cut down on the attack errors with just four as it hit .265, but the Tigers escaped with a 25-23 set win despite hitting just .194 in the second.

The third set was the most dominating of the match as the Tigers came out and hit .409 with 11 kills while forcing 11 Georgia attack errors, limiting UGA to just -.107 hitting in the set. In fact, seven of the Tigers' 15 blocks in the match came in the third set alone.

Mizzou will be back in action next weekend as they head to Tennessee and Alabama to continue SEC play. For all the latest on Mizzou volleyball, stay tuned to MUTigers.com and follow the team on twitter @MU_Volleyball.



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