Hitting woes get to Cyclones as they drop regular season finale

Avery Rhodes and Eleanor Holthaus go up for a block against West Virginia. Iowa State’s volleyball team faced West Virginia Nov. 6. Iowa State won 3-0.

The Iowa State volleyball team (17-11, 8-8 Big 12) dropped its regular season finale three sets to one to the No. 4 Texas Longhorns (21-3, 15-1 Big 12) on Saturday night. 

Iowa State started off with optimism, as it was able to squeak out the first set, winning 25 to 23. Despite the set win, the Cyclones hit a lower percentage (.244) than the Longhorns (.278). 

The hitting percentage woes continued for Iowa State into the second set. In a 25-9 match domination for Texas, the Cyclones hit -.176 compared to .296 for the Longhorns. The Longhorns had only 10 kills compared to 14 in the first set, meaning that the Cyclones made more errors on their side of the net. 

Iowa State put up more of a fight in the third set, losing 25-19. After being down by five for much of the game, the Cyclones cut the lead to two late in the match.  

Iowa State volleyball won against UNI 3-1 on Sept. 10 in Hilton Coliseum.

The Cyclones carried that late momentum into the fourth set, as they pulled out to an early 10-7 lead. The hitting percentage increased tremendously for the squad, as Iowa State hit .364. 

It was not enough though, as the Longhorns battled back and took the final set 25 to 19. 

One area where the Longhorns dominated was up front, as they had 13 blocks to only four for Iowa State. 

With the win, the Longhorns clinched a share of the Big 12 title with the Baylor Bears and are a contender for a top seed in the NCAA Tournament. 

Meanwhile, Iowa State’s fate is in the hands of the committee as it will have to wait to see if it has done enough to earn an at-large bid. 

The Cyclones’ hopes looked very promising coming into the Kansas game with a RPI ranking of 37th. But with the loss to the Jayhawks and the Longhorns, the team’s hopes are far less certain. 

The NCAA tournament selection show begins at 7:30 p.m. Sunday on ESPNU. 

Source: Iowa State Daily