FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (Univ. of Ark.) - The University of Arkansas volleyball team lost in four sets (30-28, 23-25, 18-25, 24-26) Friday night to Alabama at Barnhill Arena. Offensively, the Razorbacks were paced by senior Hayley Koop who tied her career high with 15 kills behind a .324 hitting percentage. With the loss, Arkansas drops to 11-6 overall and 4-2 in Southeastern Conference play.
Senior libero Emily Helm led all players with 14 digs while sophomore Summer Morgan and freshman Breana Jones tied for the match lead with six total blocks. For the ninth time this season, Arkansas reached double-digit block figures with 13.0 total team blocks. Sophomore Monica Bollinger had 10 digs against the Crimson Tide. Junior Meredith Hays was the only other Razorback to reach double digits with 11 kills on the night.
Arkansas saved five set points in the opener and took advantage of its first opportunity with a tandem block by Jones and senior Ashley Vazquez to win the set, 30-28. The Razorbacks trailed by as many as four points early in the game before pulling even at 18-all with a block from Jones and fellow freshman Barbara Dapic. Arkansas was aided by five total team blocks in the first frame.
After dropping sets two and three, the Razorbacks took an early 8-5 lead in the fourth game and led by as many as five points at 14-9 after a kill from Dapic. Alabama (14-4, 2-2 SEC) fought back to pull even at 19-all after consecutive attack errors by the Razorbacks. Arkansas recovered to have a set point at 24-23 but the visitors rattled off the last three points of the match to claim in the victory.
The Razorbacks will now travel to Knoxville, Tenn., for a Sunday match against the Lady Vols. First serve is scheduled for 12 p.m. (CT) at Thompson-Boling Arena and will be televised live by SportSouth and Fox Sports; check local listings for network availability. Dave Baker and Phil Bush will handle the play-by-play and color commentary duties, respectively.
Arkansas and Tennessee split a pair of matches last season with each winning on the opponent's home floor. Sunday's match is the only meeting between the two teams this season. Last year's win in Knoxville by the Razorbacks was the program's first since the 2007 season.