Kentucky volleyball takes SEC home opener against Arkansas


The Kentucky volleyball team celebrates a point during the game against Arkansas on Friday, Sept. 28, 2018 at Memorial Coliseum in Lexington, Ky. Kentucky swept the first three sets to win the match. Photo by Jordan Prather | Staff

Roman West

The 19th ranked Kentucky Wildcats (8-4, 2-0) remained undefeated in SEC after defeating the Arkansas Razorbacks in a three-set sweep. This was the Wildcats’ fifth win a row and their eighth straight against the Razorbacks, the last seven of which have been sweeps.

Kentucky’s offense was firing on all cylinders tonight, finishing with 48 kills. Thirty of those kills came from Leah Edmond and Brooke Morgan, who had 15 each. Edmond has posted double-digit kills in 31 straight games and Morgan’s 15 kills tied her career-high.

“We got a lot of swings out of Brooke tonight,” head coach Craig Skinner said. “She’s going to see a lot of opportunities to kill the ball.”

Most of those opportunities were set up from sophomore Madison Lilley, who collected 38 of Kentucky’s 40 assists. Heading into the match, she was ranked third in the SEC with 10.59 assists per set. That average will go up after her performance tonight.

The lone scare of the night for the Wildcats came in the second set. After dominating in the first set, Kentucky found themselves down 17-10 in the second. Edmond was at the front of the comeback for the Wildcats, coming up with five kills in the rest of the set to give them a 26-24 win.

“They got it rolling in the second set,” Skinner said. “But we stayed steady and got the job done.”

Skinner was specifically pleased with the way his team served against the Razorbacks. He also said that Arkansas had some different players on the court than they had expected.

“Our serving got better and better as the match went on,” Skinner said. “They came out with a completely different lineup than we had seen on video. Even though we started well, they got rolling in the second set and got more comfortable with it.

Kentucky’s next match is against Missouri at 1 p.m. on Sunday in Memorial Coliseum.