Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

No. 10 Texas volleyball completes epic comeback win to take down No. 9 BYU

Mackenzie Coleman
Texas Volleyball team celebrates in-between sets on Sept. 3, 2023.

In a top 10 showdown, No. 10 Texas gutted out a comeback win to take down No. 9 BYU. The Longhorns displayed their Texas fight and earned their best win of the season in the process. Texas continues their perfect record in conference play with a 3–0 record and improves to 8–3 on the season.

Texas’ junior outside hitters Madisen Skinner and Jenna Wenaas led the team in kills with 15 and 14, respectively. Freshman setter Ella Swindle had her best performance of the season, tallying 37 assists, five kills and five blocks. The Longhorn defense also saw contributions from seniors Bella Bergmark who had six blocks and Asjia O’Neal with four.

In the first set, Texas plagued themselves with early miscommunications and errors, giving BYU an 8-4 lead and forcing Texas into a timeout. The Longhorns could not find answers to stop the Cougars as their lead grew to 17-4. Texas finally got a point due to a service error and managed to find some signs of life, getting the absent crowd back into the game, but it was insignificant to the set outcome as BYU held on to the first set 25-13.

The Longhorn errors were apparent after a hitting percentage of -.192 and nine hitting errors. 

The second set saw much more of a battle as both teams continued to trade points, searching for a play to open up the set, and the Longhorns found it first. Led behind a Skinner service run, the Longhorns went on a 4-0 run to take the lead 11-9 and force a BYU timeout. The Longhorn’s momentum shift took full effect with Swindle at the net, dunking the ball on the second hit to give Texas a 19-17 late in the set, forcing another BYU timeout, but it was no use when Texas took the set making it a 1-1 game. 

Texas’ momentum carried into the third set, jumping to an 8-5 lead and a BYU timeout. Skinner had a productive service run, grabbing an ace and leading the Longhorns to a 13-8 lead and another quick Cougar timeout. Skinner continued to overpower the BYU receivers and grew the lead to 17-8. The Longhorns held on to win the set 25-15. Texas totaled four blocks, forced nine hitting errors and held BYU to a hitting percentage of .000 during the set. After a brutal first set, Texas had fully flipped the script after three and led 2-1 in the match. 

With the momentum on Texas’ side, the fourth set mirrored the third with another hot start for the Longhorns with a 15-11 lead, and two BYU timeouts. The Cougars’ timeouts paid off as they managed to mount an 8-5 run and cut the lead down to 20-19 late in the set. The Longhorns yet again relied on their best asset of setting the block to grab back momentum and take the fourth set, finding a way to complete the comeback win.

In the post-game conference, head coach Jerritt Elliott explained how finding a way to win after their slow start says a lot about his team and their fight.

“We were making a ton of hitting errors and just uncharacteristic of what we’ve been doing in practice,” Elliott said. “The great thing is that we caught ourselves, and we were able to come back.”

While it’s early in the season, Texas showed championship-caliber grit, pulling off a comeback win against a top-10 opponent. The Longhorns will return to Gregory Gym Friday at 7 p.m. to take on BYU again and look for back-to-back wins.

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