Nov. 16, 2012
TULSA, Okla. (SMU) - Despite strong performances by freshman Abbey Bybel and Caroline Young, the Mustangs were knocked out of the Conference USA Championship Friday by top-seeded Tulsa (25-23, 25-19, 25-18). Bybel and Young each had 10 kills in the match, and Bybel hit .333 with three digs.
"I am proud of the fact that a lot of our young kids hung in there. They were not frazzled by any means, and we kept chipping away," head coach Lisa Seifert said after the match. "I'm a huge Abbey Bybel fan. She hit .333 and I was excited about that, and I was pretty disappointed that she didn't make an all-freshmen team. I am excited about our future."
Tulsa's Tyler Henderson was the difference in the match, scoring 23 kills with a .700 attack percentage to lead the Golden Hurricane to the 3-0 win. Susan Lewis had a match-high 14 digs for the Mustangs, and Olivia Bailey had 10 digs and 15 assists in the two setter rotation for her eighth double-double of the season.
The Mustangs matched the Golden Hurricane nearly point for point in the first set, but Tulsa held on for the win, 25-23. SMU erased a 9-6 lead, the largest of the set by either team, fighting back to tie the score 13-13. The Mustangs took a two-point lead a few points later, leading 19-17 before a 4-1 run by Tulsa evened the score 21-21. Tulsa finished on an 8-4 run to take the first set.
The Golden Hurricane started the second set on a 7-1 run, and led by eight before the Mustangs started chipping away at the lead. SMU rallied to score six of the next eight points and cut the lead to three, 11-8, but after a timeout, Tulsa began pulling away again, eventually winning by six, 25-19.
Tulsa closed out the match in the third set behind a 10-kill performance by Henderson. The Mustangs host North Texas Wednesday at 4 p.m. before closing out the season against Baylor on Sat., Nov. 24 at 1 p.m. in Moody Coliseum.