No. 6 Kentucky hands Ole miss first loss of season in five sets


Kentucky Wildcats associate head coach Anders Nelson talks to the Wildcats during a timeout in the University of Kentucky vs. Missouri volleyball game on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021, at Memorial Coliseum in Lexington, Kentucky. UK won 3-0. Photo by Jack Weaver | Staff

Hunter Shelton

No. 6 Kentucky volleyball handed Ole Miss their first loss of the season on Wednesday night in Oxford, Mississippi, winning 3-2 (25-20, 25-23, 20-25, 16-25, 15-9) in five sets. 

Alli Stumler’s 22 kills led the way for Kentucky on Wednesday. Madi Skinner was right behind Stumler with 20 kills.  

Kentucky found themselves on the right side of two close sets, taking a 2-0 lead. Emma Grome’s 17 assists and Eleanor Beavin’s five digs propelled the Wildcats to a .515 hit percentage and a win in set one. Through two sets, Stumler and Skinner combined for 17 kills 

The Rebels bounced back in set three, as Payton Brgoch recorded two of Ole Miss’ final three kills to avoid the sweep. Mississippi would run away with the fourth set, as Kentucky’s offense struggled to get going. Anna Bair led the Rebels in kills with 20 on 38 attempts. 

Kentucky entered the fifth-set tiebreaker with a record of 1-1 in matches that go the distance. UK’s Maddie Berezowitz went on a 4-0 service run to put the Wildcats up 5-1. Kentucky would hold on to their lead, eventually winning the set and the match, 15-9.  

“First off, hats off to Ole Miss and how far they’ve come,” UK head coach Craig Skinner said. “Along with that progress, their environment was tremendous and great for SEC Volleyball.” 

The win improves the Cats record to 9-3 (2-0 SEC.) Kentucky will have an entire week off to prepare for their next match against Mississippi State on Wednesday, Oct. 6. inside Memorial Coliseum.  

The match is set to begin at 6 p.m. E.T.