12th-seeded Baylor volleyball (24-6) earned its first postseason victory in front of its home crowd with a 3-0 sweep of Miami of Ohio (22-9) in the NCAA Women’s Volleyball Championship First Round Friday night at the Ferrell Center, 25-19, 25-16, 25-21.
In addition to matching their most home wins in program history (13-2), the Bears had 1,610 fans in attendance Friday night which is 10th-best for Ferrell Center volleyball crowds.
Big 12 Freshman of the Year Yossiana Pressley had the best three-set match in postseason history with 17 kills on a .361 hitting effort. Her kill count was 11 more than the Redhawk’s leading attacker, Taylor Daignault (6).
Anchoring the back row, Jana Brusek had a program-best 19 digs in a postseason three-set match. Aniah Philo nearly had a double-double with eight kills and 13 dig while Shelly Fanning added 11 kills from the middle.
The Bears came out swinging in set one and jumped out to a 14-6 lead behind key defensive plays by Brusek and Philo, forcing a Redhawk timeout. BU led by as many as 10 before the Redhawks used a 6-1 run to pull within five. Pressley’s fifth kill of the set gave Baylor the early advantage, 25-19.
The second set saw six ties and two lead changes early, but a Camryn Freiberg kill helped BU jump in front by three and force a timeout at 11-7. The Baylor defense held Miami of Ohio to seven kills on a .049 attack clip en route to taking the set, 25-16.
BU came out slow in the third and fell behind 5-1 to force an early timeout. Fueled by a 4-0 run with Braya Hunt at the service line, the Bears drew even and eventually took the lead after a service ace from Pressley. The Bears went on a 3-0 run after an emphatic kill from Tola Itiola to extend its lead and close it out in straight sets.
• BU matched its most wins at home in program history (13). Baylor’s 1999 squad finished 13-1 at home.
• Yossiana Pressley’s 17 kills were a program-best in a postseason three-set match.
• Jana Brusek’s 19 digs is the most digs in a three-set match in postseason history.
• Shelly Fanning was the second Bear in double-digit kills with 11.
• Baylor had four different players record a service ace against the Redhawks (Fanning, Philo, Pressley and Brusek).
• In her debut postseason match, Hannah Lockin recorded 36 assists.
• BU has advanced to the NCAA Second Round for the second consecutive year until McGuyre.
• BU is now 1-0 in postseason matches at the Ferrell Center.
• Baylor is now 2-0 all-time against Miami of Ohio.
STAT OF THE MATCH
17 – the program-best postseason kill count by Yossiana Pressley in three sets.
“It was a battle, for sure. I’m not sure it was our sharpest or cleanest match, but the effort was there. For us, it always starts with great effort, and then we’ve got to be a little bit more technical with some of the things we’re doing. On defense, Jana, 19 digs, awesome, awesome job. She’s just been passing lights-out. So, it opened the door for us to continue to do some great things. Yossi really stepped up. Hitting her in the back row, I think, is going to be a force for us through the tournament. And then both of our middles did a good job, either killing the ball or being disruptive.” -head coach Ryan McGuyre
Baylor faces Colorado (23-9) in the NCAA Second Round Saturday at 8 p.m. CT in Waco for a spot in the NCAA Sweet 16 next week. Tickets are priced at $10 for adults and $5 for youth (ages 2-17) and can be purchased at www.BaylorBears.com or through the Baylor Athletics Ticket Office at 254-710-1000.