BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo volleyball team fought hard against the MAC-leading Miami (OH) RedHawks, but the Bulls fell 3-0 as Miami won its 12th straight match and continued its stretch of not dropping a set since Sep. 9.
The RedHawks took the contest 25-18, 25-23, 25-19 as they outhit the Bulls, .240 to .120. UB had its chances in each set, beginning with the first as the Bulls were down by just one midway through the first 16-15 following a kill by junior Cassie Shado. However, Miami scored three straight to increase its lead to 19-15. UB pulled within three at 21-18, but the RedHawks scored the final four points to take the set.
Buffalo had its best shot in the second set as it fought its way back from an 18-13 deficit. UB continued to trail 23-18 and 24-20 when the Bulls scored three straight points and a service ace from Madison Clark pulled the Bulls within one at 24-23. However, following a RedHawk timeout, Miami ended the set on a kill by Maris Below.
The Bulls got out to a quick start in the third as they opened on a 6-2 run following an ace by sophomore Megan Wernette. A block from Shado put the Bulls up 10-4, but Miami went on a 6-1 run to pull within 11-10. UB went back up by two at 14-12, but the RedHawks went on a 7-2 run this time to take a 19-16 advantage. UB pulled back within two at 20-18, but Miami ended the set and the match on a 5-1 run.
Sophomore Valisha Watkins had a team-high 11 kills, while Shado added six kills and Megan Wernette and Scout McLerran each added five. McLerran had her five kills on seven attempts as she hit .714, while adding 26 assists and 11 digs.
Defensively, freshman Maddie Torbeck led the Bulls with 14 digs as she started at libero for the first time in her career. Fellow freshman Hannah Watson added eight digs as the freshmen trio of Torbeck, Watson, and McLerran had 33 of UB's 43 digs. UB got outblocked by Miami, 11.0 to 4.0 on the evening.
The Bulls will remain home tomorrow evening at 6pm when they host Bowling Green at Alumni Arena.