JONESBORO, Ark. -- Qiana Canete had her 10th double-double of the year and Zhanelle Geathers finished 15 kills but it wasn't enough as Arkansas State outlasted UTA volleyball in three sets (19-25, 18-25, 18-25), on Friday night at the Convocation Center.
UTA (8-10, 2-3 Sun Belt Conference) suffered the three-set loss to the defending division champion Red Wolves (10-8, 3-2 Sun Belt), who finished the match with a .274 hitting percentage with four service aces and nine blocks. UTA was held to a .137 hitting percentage with 24 attacking and seven service errors, including four in the first set.
The Mavs owned an early first-set lead to open the match but a 4-0 run from the Red Wolves spurred the comeback. A-State's 5-0 run to finish the first-set win was a preview of its second-set victory, as the Red Wolves used a 4-0 run to finish the game. UTA rallied to tie the set in the third at 12-12 but A-State finished off the three-set win with 13 of the final 19 points.
LEADING THE MAVS
A native of Copperas Cove, Texas, Canete had 14 kills and 14 digs, hitting .235. Canete moved up to third on the UTA career list for digs and is one of only three players in program history to rank in the top-10 in UTA history in digs and kills.
Geathers, a native of Lindale, Texas, finished with 15 kills. Kylie Jedlicka registered seven kills and five digs, freshman Tessa Harfield charted three kills and Madison McConnell finished with a kill and a pair of block assists. Sophomore setter Haley Higgins led the club with 32 assists, with Libbie Vickers owning 13 digs.
UTA will return to action on Saturday at Little Rock at 6:30 p.m. CT.
The Mavs opened the match strong with a 3-0 run to take a 4-1 lead, getting on the board first with a kill from Canete after a strong dig from Ashlynn Ford. UTA added kills from Canete, Higgins, Geathers and McConnell to take a 6-3 lead and after the match was evened up at 9-9, Jedlicka finished her first kill to give UTA a 10-9 lead. A-State went on a 4-0 run to take its first lead and forced a timeout from UTA Coach J.T. Wenger. UTA answered out of the break with a 2-0 run, getting a kill from Geathers and a block from McConnell and Jedlicka to cut it to 12-13. Back-to-back kills from Geathers and Canete evened the match at 15 but A-State finished off the set by scoring 10 of the final 14 points for the 25-19 win, including a 5-0 run to finish the game win. UTA hit .272 in the set and got five kills and four digs from Canete, with Higgins charting 15 assists.
A-State started strong in the second, erasing an early 2-1 UTA lead with a 4-0 run, with UTA fighting back with a 2-0 stretch behind a kill from Canete. With the match evened up at 11-11, A-State went on a 3-0 run to build a lead, with UTA fighting back with a kill from Canete and one from Jedlicka. UTA cut it to 14-16 after a kill from Geathers – her second quality swing on the rally – with Vickers and Canete contributing digs in the point. UTA went on a 3-0 run with a block rom Geathers and a kill from Geathers to cut it to 17-18. A-State scored seven of the final eight points in the set to finish it off, including a 4-0 run to end it at 25-18. UTA had 11 kills in the set but was held to 10 hitting errors.
The teams traded points in the third, with Canete getting UTA's first two points on kills and Geathers notching three straight UTA points with kills on good sets from Higgins. Trailing 10-6, UTA went on a 2-0 run behind a monster termination from Canete, with Jedlicka's cross-court kill giving UTA a 10-12 lead and spurring a 3-0 run to tie the match at 12-12. A-State then rallied with a 5-0 run and took a 19-13 lead despite amazing hustle from Canete for a pair of digs. A-State finished off the set and the win 25-18.
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