Kentucky rolls past Mississippi State 3-1 to maintain winning form


Travis Fannon

Women’s volleyball vs Auburn on Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022, at Memorial Coliseum in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Travis Fannon | Staff

Grace Kennedy, Reporter

Kentucky volleyball (16-6) notched a 3-1 victory over the Mississippi State Bulldogs to stretch its win streak to five matches inside Newell-Grissom Building in Starkville, Mississippi, on Friday. 

Going into the match the Wildcats held the second overall spot in the SEC standings while the Bulldogs sat in ninth overall. 

The clear stars of the match for Kentucky were senior Adanna Rollins and junior Reagan Rutherford. Rutherford recorded 19 kills as Rollins recorded 14 and led the Cats with 43 attacks.

Sophomore setter Emma Grome also had an impressive outing, recording 54 assists and 19 digs. 

The first set was back-and-forth but ultimately ended with a kill by Mississippi State’s Sania Petties, who was assisted by Gabby Coulter, creating a final set score of 23-25 in favor of the Bulldogs.

In the second set the Wildcat defense did everything it could to ensure the Bulldogs were unable to get any momentum flowing to extend their lead. 

The set started similarly to the first with both teams racking up points against each other before Grome took the Cats from trailing 14-13 to leading 19-14 with her service and assists by Azhani Tealer, ultimately creating a final of 25-21 for Kentucky. 

In the third set Mississippi State’s Audrey Whitworth intimidated the Cats with a service streak of five points which forced UK to call a timeout. Returning to play, the set started to look more like the previous two as the points went back-and-forth once again. 

Ultimately the set would come down to one final stretch in which Eleanor Beavin recorded three services in a row but was interrupted and eventually lost her streak.

Continuing the close contest, Kentucky was able to secure the set victory of 25-20 following a service error by Bulldog Lauren Myrick.

The final set ended up in favor of Kentucky on the back of high-quality service.

Grome recorded the first three points while serving to start off the set before Tealer recorded eight points in a row, taking the Cats from a 11-9 lead to a 19-9 lead.

Rutherford ultimately capped off the match with two kills, both assisted by Grome for UK’s 25th and final point. 

The Cats look to maintain their winning ways on Wednesday, Nov. 16, as they take on the Tennessee Volunteers at home inside Memorial Coliseum. The match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. EST and will air live on the SEC Network +.