Tarleton comes up short vs UTRGV in WAC home opener

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STEPHENVILLE- Tarleton got off to a quick 1-0 lead over UTRGV on Saturday afternoon in Wisdom Gym, but the Vaqueros battled back and ultimately took the match 3-1 (25-21, 19-25, 18-25, 18-25).

The Texans (8-8, 0-2 WAC) saw some tweaks personnel wise as Grayson Schirpik was forced to miss the match. The Texans rolled out a starting lineup of Isabel Gonzaba, Megan Hodges, Joselyn Roberson, Emma Burke, Breanna McDonough, Ailie Hair and Ana Costas for the first time this season. Five of the starters were freshmen.

The first set went just how Tarleton drew it up as they caught the visiting Vaqueros (13-4, 2-0 WAC) off guard. A 4-0 run to make the score 11-5 in favor of Tarleton got the crowd engaged as Haynes landed back-to-back kills to close the run. Haynes led Tarleton with a career-high 16 kills, just one match after she finished with a then career-high 15 kills at SFA. Tarleton carried their lead the whole way through set one. They landed 14 kills to the Vaqueros’ 12.

UTRGV adjusted and were able to take the next three sets to secure the 3-1 match victory. The duo of Sarah Cruz and Luisa Silva Dos Santos tallied 19 and 17 kills respectively as their presence was felt at the net for most of the afternoon.

The Texans hit a team-high .250 in set four, but UTRGV proved too dynamic as they countered with a .429 hitting percentage and 17 kills of their own. Midway through the set, Tarleton found itself down 16-10. They reeled off a 5-0 run highlighted by two kills from Roberson and Burke each, and the lead was trimmed to one. The teams traded points from there, but a 4-0 run while up 20-17 led the Vaqueros to victory.

Roberson finished with a career-high 12 kills, followed by Burke who also tallied a career-high 10. Hodges eclipsed 40 assists for the first time in her young career as she had 43 to pair with six digs. Costas led with 15 digs followed by Matti Theurer with 13.

Tarleton returns to action this coming Thursday at 6 p.m. as they welcome SFA to Wisdom Gym. The match is Greek Night as well as a white out where free t-shirts will be handed out. The match precedes Midnight Madness.

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