No. 1 volleyball sweeps High Point, wraps up non-conference schedule unblemished

Katie Borchetta, Sports Reporter

No. 1 Texas volleyball finished out non-conference play and remained undefeated with another win against High Point University on Friday at Gregory Gym.

The win not only brought the Longhorns’ record 8-0, but it also marked their fifth sweep of the season and third at home in front of the Texas faithful.

“It’s awesome to be in front of Greg,” sophomore outside hitter Madisen Skinner said. “We have, I think, the best fan base in the country.”

Skinner led the team with 13 kills on the night, and Parra and Eggleston followed with nine each. Overall, the Longhorns had 46 kills to the Panthers’ 31. Texas also towered over High Point with a team hitting percentage of .365 in comparison to the Panthers’ .158.

The Longhorns started strong in the first set with a multitude of their points coming from Skinner, sophomore outside hitter Melanie Parra and Bella Bergmark, redshirt junior middle blocker. Texas finished the set 25-16 after a kill from Bergmark.

As the second set got underway, Texas appeared to play slower than usual, allowing High Point to stay within a few points of Texas the entire set. The Longhorns struggled to return the ball, and High Point shocked Texas with many blocks that landed the ball on the Longhorn side of the court.

The Panthers refused to let the Gregory Gym atmosphere get to them, maintaining a high energy throughout which kept them in the game. However, the Longhorns still took the set 25-18 with a kill from Skinner.

High Point burst out of the gate quicker in the third set, building a lead until Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott was forced to call a timeout. Down 10-5, the Longhorns finally began to turn it around and went on a run. After the Longhorns clawed their way back, the set ended with a kill from junior opposite hitter Molly Phillips. Texas took the third set 25-16, finishing off the sweep.  

With non-conference play now in the rearview mirror, Texas will open up conference play against Kansas on Wednesday.

“I think we’re ready,” Skinner said. “We’ve prepared for so long and we’ve worked so hard. … We’re excited to play Kansas (in) our first (conference) match.”

After playing four straight and the majority of Texas’ non-conference games at home, the Longhorns will travel to Lawrence, Kansas for next week’s match. Skinner said the team is excited to get out on the road and experience a new environment.

“It is so awesome to play in a different environment and kind of have everyone hate us,” Skinner said.