Thursday, February 27

Women’s volleyball begins season doubly swept in Nebraska

Junior outside hitter Mac May led the Bruins with 12 kills and nine digs in UCLA women's volleyball's losing effort against No. 2 Nebraska. (Michael Zshornack/Daily Bruin senior staff)

Women's Volleyball

No. 20 Baylor3
No. 2 Nebraska3

The Bruins couldn’t win a single set.

UCLA women’s volleyball (0-2) was swept in both of its matches this weekend at the Husker Invitational in Lincoln, Nebraska. The Bruins lost to No. 20 Baylor (2-0) on Friday afternoon, then fell to the home team No. 2 Nebraska (2-0) on Saturday.

Despite the losses, coach Michael Sealy said he was still proud of his team for the poise they showed throughout the matches, even when things weren’t going well.

“They were in there many times when it wasn’t going our way and they continued to fight,” Sealy said. “You never saw people drop their heads or show frustration, it was all about the next-point mentality, and that’s something that hasn’t been around in a while.”

The first set against the Bears remained close early, with the teams tying nine times in the first 18 points. UCLA held the lead as late as 15-14, but Baylor stormed back, winning 11 of the last 16 points to take the set 25-20.

The Bruins trailed for the entirety of the second set, eventually dropping the set 25-16, and held the lead only once in the third set at 12-11, as the Bears took the set 25-20 to complete the sweep.

UCLA allowed 39 kills in the match, with 19 of them coming from the Bears’ outside hitter Yossiana Pressley. In contrast, no Bruin recorded double-digit kills, with junior outside hitter Mac May and senior outside hitter Savvy Simo collecting nine kills apiece – good for the team-high.

The only lead for UCLA in its match against Nebraska came on the first point of the game, after which the Huskers won 13 of the next 17 points to jump out to a 13-5 lead. While the Bruins were able to close the gap to 13-9, that’s as close as they got before the Huskers took the first set 25-12.

The Bruins did not lead in the second or third set and were outhit .290 to .143 and .343 to .146, respectively. The loss to Nebraska was the second time in two days UCLA was swept.

May led the Bruins in kills and digs against Nebraska, with 12 and nine, respectively, just one dig short of a double-double. In her collegiate debut, redshirt freshman outside hitter Lexi Hadrych recorded eight kills in two sets played.

UCLA finished its game against Nebraska with 28 kills and a .114 hitting percentage. The Bruins also recorded six blocks in comparison to the Huskers’ three, with redshirt freshman middle blocker Tristan Savage accounting for four of them.

“Obviously there’s a lot more we can do,” May said. “I don’t think we’re unhappy with how we played, but we know we can do a lot better if we just clean up a lot of our errors and execute and manufacture points.”

UCLA’s next opportunity for its first win of the season will come next weekend at the Long Beach State Mizuno Classic. The Bruins will face Georgia (2-1) on Thursday, followed by matches against Texas State (1-2) and host school Long Beach State (2-1).

Assistant Sports editor

Smith is currently an assistant Sports editor on the softball, gymnastics, women's volleyball, swim & dive and rowing beats. She was previously a reporter on the softball, women's volleyball, rowing and swim & dive beats.

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