Volleyball 9/25/20

Texas State junior outside hitter Janell Fitzgerald (16) and junior middle blocker Jillian Slaughter (8) jump to tap the ball over the net, Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, at Strahan Arena. Texas State beat the University of Louisiana at Monroe 3-0 (25-13, 25-16, 25-18).

Texas State (6-1 overall, 1-0 in Sun Belt) opened up conference play Sept. 25 with a 3-0 (25-13, 25-16, 25-18) win against the University of Louisiana-Monroe (1-3 overall, 0-1 in Sun Belt).

The matchup was the first of three games between the teams this weekend.

Texas State played six games going into the contest compared to ULM's three. Throughout the game, the Warhawks consistently struggled to get the ball over the net.

The first set was evenly matched, with neither team jumping out ahead in the early going. After going up 7-5, the Bobcats went on a 5-1 scoring run to force a ULM timeout.

Coming out of the timeout, the Warhawks continued to struggle, allowing the Bobcats to go on another scoring run. With the score at 18-7, ULM used its final timeout of the set.

The Warhawks' play improved slightly after the timeout, but it was too late as the Bobcats won 25-13.

The second set followed a similar path as the first. Texas State went up 5-1 to force a ULM timeout. After the timeout, the Bobcats kept their foot on the gas going on another 5-1 run to go up 10-2.

The Warhawks narrowed the lead to 17-12, but another dominate run by the Bobcats ended the set 25-16 to put the 'Cats up 2-0.

The final set saw Texas State quickly secure a 14-5 lead, but ULM responded with a 6-1 run to cut the deficit to 11-15. Following this, Texas State went on a 4-0 run, met with a 4-0 run by the Warhawks to make the score 15-19.

Texas State outscored ULM 6-3 to close out the set, winning 25-18 to secure the sweep.

Texas State led in nearly every statistical category. The Bobcats had a season-high .317 hitting percentage compared to ULM's .112. Texas State had 47 kills to 27 by ULM, and the team led in digs 58 to 33.

Junior outside hitter Janell Fitzgerald and sophomore outside hitter Caitlan Buettner led all players with 12 kills each. Fitzgerald (.579) and Buettner (.524) each set career-highs in hitting percentage. Junior setter Emily DeWalt led with 35 assists and chipped in 11 digs. Junior libero Kayla Granado led all players with 13 digs.

Texas State will play ULM again at 6 p.m. and will end the three-game series at 1 p.m. on Sept. 26.

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