EDINBURG, Texas (KTSM) – The UTEP volleyball team achieved its best start in the history of the program on Thursday after winning against UTRGV.
The Miners volleyball team achieved a season-high of 13 blocks with their second-most assists, 61, in the Thursday game against The University of Rio Grande Valley.
UTEP volleyball players, Yasso Amin and Kenidy Howard, reached career-highs.
In addition to Amin and Howard, Paulina Perez Rosas hit double-digit kills. Hande Yetis, the volleyball team’s setter, led the team with three aces and 28 assists. Perez Rosas recorded 17 digs for a double-double while Alyssa Sianez tallied 12 digs.
“The match was sloppy on both ends because we were really bringing it at each other,” head coach, Ben Wallis, said. “UTRGV passed it very well, especially in the first set, they were better at assisting than we were. We were whacking the ball out of bounds all over the place again and not taking the right swings, and then we got tentative.”
The game took a turn of events, where the volleyball players “started going bigger and being more physical”, Wallis said.
“Even in the third and fourth set, we were pretty high error again, but continued to find ways to keep being physical and that’s what won us the match,” Wallis said.
The UTRGV Vaqueros set the tone in the first set of the game, rolling out multiple scoring runs to take the lead 25-20.
A quick change of pace came from UTEP when the team started the second set 7-1. UTEP quickly jumped ahead and achieved a 10-1 score, ultimately leading them to finish the set at 25-19.
In the third set, both teams recorded 11 tied scores. The Miners arrived at set point with a three-point margin and the team would go on to win the set, 25-23, and take a 2-1 advantage in the match.
UTRGV sent UTEP into two set points in the last set of the game where the Miners came out victorious over the Vaqueros, winning the match, 26-24.
“We did a lot of things wrong, but we also did a lot of things right,” Wallis said. “I’m glad we got this nonconference match in before Rice because it tested us and it was an intense environment.”
The volleyball team will return for its Conference-USA opening game against Rice University in Houston, Texas, on Oct. 2 and Oct. 3. The match-up will be streamed on CUSA.tv, with live stats available.