Mustangs Win 3-1 Defensive Battle Against Houston
Oct. 25, 2013
DALLAS (SMU) - Freshman Morgan Heise matched her season high, recording a match-high 18 digs, and Caroline Young matched her career high with six blocks as SMU outlasted Houston for a 3-1 (26-24, 25-21, 14-25, 25-13) win in a defensive slugfest. With the win, SMU gained a match on the Cougars at the midway point of the conference schedule, improving to 6-3 in the American Athletic Conference and 14-8 overall, while Houston fell to 5-4 in league play and 13-11 overall.
Caroline Daly also had a season-high six blocks in the match for SMU, and the Mustangs had 13 blocks as a team, but Houston posted 17 blocks with 60 digs to keep the match close. Neither team hit above .160 with each defense recording stellar numbers, but Cailin Bula led the Mustangs with 10 kills, reaching double figures for the seventh time this season. Young and Abbey Bybel each had nine kills, and Bybel also had seven digs.
SMU ended the match with a dominant effort in the fourth set, hitting .292, the highest attack percentage for either team in a set. Leading by one point, 10-9, SMU went on a 6-1 run for a 16-10 lead. The Mustangs held the Cougars to just three points the rest of the way for a 25-13 win to end the match after Houston won the third 25-14 to avoid the sweep.
Houston had the first chance to win the first set, leading 24-23, but after a service error, Daly and Young blocked the attack to give the Mustangs a chance to win the set. Bula's serve bounced back over the next off the Houston defender, and Daly slammed it the floor to give SMU the early advantage with the 26-24 win. Houston took a 4-1 lead, and held a 10-5 lead before the Mustangs mounted a comeback. SMU went on a 6-1 run to take an 18-17 lead, its first since scoring the first point of the set.
In the second set, it was the Mustangs taking an early lead, 9-5. Houston rallied back to tie the set, 11-11, and the score stayed within a few points all the way to the end. Holding a two-point lead, Bula scored a kill to give SMU a 24-21 lead. On set point, it was Daly ending the set once again, posting her fifth block of the match to give SMU the 25-21 victory and a 2-0 lead in the match.
The Mustangs continue the homestand Friday versus Rutgers in the Dedman Center at 7 p.m. SMU plays its last of five straight home matches on Sunday, Nov. 3, against Connecticut at 1 p.m.