Texas volleyball wins rematch against Israel’s National team

Chris Hummer

After falling to Israel in a very tight five set affair just two days prior, the Longhorns stepped on to the court Monday looking to turn around quickly from the loss, facing the very same team that edged them days before.

And that’s exactly what they did, winning in straight sets 25-23, 25-19, 25-23 against Israel.

“I think we all just knew that we had to go out there and get it done,” said freshman Haley Eckerman. “Our upperclassmen did a great job of helping everyone out. It wasn’t just one person, it was the whole team. We worked together and that’s what we have been doing in practice.”

Texas used its size and physicality at the net efficiently, totaling 12 blocks as a team, far outpacing Israel’s total of five.

It wasn’t just the block total that was impressive — the timing of the blocks was the key. In the first set, back and forth the whole way, Texas was serving for the set, and it was a block by freshman Haley Eckerman and Khat Bell that sealed it.

“Ultimately, I think our blocking is getting better, therefore our defense is getting better and we’re getting more swings,” said Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott. “We were pretty efficient until the last set.”

Eckerman, who missed the previous game against Israel with a minor injury, was a big help for Texas. Her talents are used often in the system, and Elliott gave her a lot of credit for the team pulling through and beating Israel this time.

“I think having Haley [Eckerman] out there and taking out of system swings was very, very important for us,” Elliott said. “Her and Khat did a great job on their swings.”

In the second set it looked like the momentum from the first really wouldn’t carry over. But at 8-8, Texas went on a mini run, capped off by a Rachael Adams’ kill on a long point. Israel was forced to call a timeout and Texas went on to win the set with ease.

“I feel like tonight was a good way to top off our weekend tournament,” Adams said. “I feel like we’re growing as a team, especially our confidence. Our young ones are really coming along.”

Printed on August 30, 2011 as: Adams helps longhorns exact revenge