By Daniel Hill
The Baylor Bears were swept 3-0 (19-25, 22-25, 22-25) in their match against the North Texas Mean Green in Denton on Tuesday night.
With the loss, Baylor volleyball’s record falls to 13-2, and the Bears’ nine-game win-streak was snapped.
“North Texas played great, and our blocking and defense was bad,” head coach Jim Barnes said. “We had a bad night, and you can’t hit that many errors and expect to win.”
In the midst of a raucous North Texas Volleyball Center, the Bears faced a quality opponent in a hostile atmosphere.
The Bears battled early in the match, and the two teams seemed to be evenly matched when North Texas called a timeout as Baylor only trailed by one point, 16-17.
Apparently the timeout caused the Mean Green to gain its composure because it never looked back and won the set comfortably, 25-19.
With a heightened sense of urgency, Baylor came out for the second set.
However, Baylor started slow and allowed North Texas to gain a sizable lead.
At one point in the match, the Bears were down 9-5. Baylor displayed resiliency and fought back to actually tie the match at 17 all.
The two teams kept an even pace and were still deadlocked at 20-20.
North Texas then used momentum from the crowd and went on a hot streak to win the second set, 25-22.
In the face of a possible sweep, the Bears came out in the third set and played Baylor volleyball.
Baylor had the lead for much of the third set and at one point the Bears even led by a score of 17-13, but North Texas battled back to tie it at 18 apiece.
The North Texas momentum forced Baylor to call a timeout to try to regain its composure.
Baylor won the next point out of the timeout and it seemed like Baylor was ready to fight to earn a fourth set.
The intensity of the match went to an all-time high as the two teams battled intensely and were eventually tied at 22-22.
Baylor, needing to win the set to stay alive, called a timeout to go over strategy for the next pivotal points.
However, after the timeout, the Mean Green scored the next three points and won the third set 25-22 to sweep the Baylor Bears and hand them their second loss of the season.
Although the loss is a setback, Baylor is still off to its best start since 2009 when the Bears went 17-1 to start the season.
The Bears are now 13-2 and before Tuesday night, they had won nine consecutive matches.
Senior Alyssa Dibbern led the squad with 12 kills in the loss to North Texas.
Freshman Laura Jones added eight kills and fellow freshman Thea Munch-Soegaard contributed with seven kills.
Senior captain Kate Harris led the team with 30 set assists and seven digs.
Baylor’s next match is their Big 12 Conference opener which will take place at 6:30 p.m. this Saturday in Ames, Iowa against Iowa State.