Wildcats sweep Alabama on road, remain undefeated in SEC


Kentucky Wildcats middle blocker Bella Bell (14) hits the ball during the University of Kentucky vs. University of Alabama volleyball game on Wednesday, March 24, 2021, at Memorial Coliseum in Lexington, Kentucky. UK won 3-0. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Cole Parke

Kentucky volleyball (11-3) swept Alabama (8-9) on the road to improve to 4-0 in the SEC. 

Ahzani Tealer and Alli Stumler co-led the ‘Cats in kills with 11 each while sophomore Reagan Rutherford followed close behind with 10. The Wildcats finished with a hit percentage of .277 while Alabama only mustered .078. The Crimson Tide‘s 22 errors played a major role in Kentucky’s sweep Saturday afternoon.

The Cats jumped out to a decisive 6-0 lead to start the first set. Alabama was able to find themselves on the board but Kentucky soon found themselves up 10-2. The Crimson Tide continued to fight and were able to get within five (21-16), but a few more points followed by a kill by Bella Bell gave Kentucky a 25-19 set one victory to put them up 1-0.

In the second set, Kentucky once again jumped out to an early 5-1 lead. Alabama got it back within two scores, but a short streak by the Cats expanded the lead back to six.

Alabama never went away in the contest, but couldn’t get back into it either. Another kill by Bell set off a final streak of scores to win the set for Kentucky. The final score for the Cats came off an attacking error by Alabama’s Shaye Eggleston to end the set 25-15.

Alabama wouldn’t allow Kentucky to take another large lead in the beginning of the third set. The score remained close until Kentucky managed to start pulling away with their largest lead of six late in the third.

Not willing to roll over, Alabama tried to fight their way back before ultimately tying the game at 23. Kentucky called a timeout to end the Alabama rally, and after a kill by Tealer, Eggleston once again found herself committing an error to give the Wildcats their final point and Kentucky won the set 25-23 to secure the sweep.

The Wildcats stay on the road for their next game in Baton Rouge for a two-game series against LSU Tigers Oct. 14-15. Those games will air at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. E.T., respectively on the SEC Network+.