Volleyball picks up first home win against Kansas since 2012

Baylor junior middle blocker Shelly Fanning pinpoints the ball on Saturday at the Ferrell Center. Fanning recorded 18 kills in the Bears' 3-0 win over Kansas. Photo courtesy of Baylor Athletics.

By Ben Everett | Sports Editor

Baylor volleyball defeated Kansas 3-0 on Saturday afternoon at the Ferrell Center behind a dominant performance from junior middle blocker Shelly Fanning.

The Bears (14-7, 6-4) defeated the Jayhawks (13-7, 6-3) at home for the first time in head coach Ryan McGuyre’s tenure.

Fanning led the Bears with 18 kills on 26 attempts for a .692 hitting percentage. Senior outside hitter Aniah Philo chipped in five kills, two assists and 11 digs.

Fanning said her performance is a product of the team passing the ball well and playing good defense.

“I think our digs and our passes were exceptional today,” Fanning said. “There are definitely some things we could have done better, but I got a lot of attempts today and that can be attributed to all the great digs and passes.”

The Bears and Jayhawks traded blows early in the first set, but Baylor took a 15-10 lead into the media timeout behind junior middle blocker Shelly Fanning’s four kills on four attempts. Back-to-back kills by Fanning put the Bears up 21-15, prompting Kansas head coach Ray Bechard to call a timeout.

Baylor took a 24-17 on a service ace from junior setter Hannah Fluegel, but Kansas embarked on a 4-0 scoring run to make it a three point game as Baylor head coach Ryan McGuyre called a timeout to regroup his team. On the next play, sophomore outside hitter Yossiana Pressley sealed the set with a kill as the Bears went up 1-0 in the match.

With Baylor in the lead at 7-6 in the second set, Fanning registered a kill, but the Jayhawks challenged the original call that the ball hit the ground and the point was rescinded. Fanning’s 10th kill gave the Bears a 15-13 lead at the media timeout of the second set.

All tied at 20, junior middle blocker Jaelyn Jackson and junior outside hitter Gia Milana each recorded kills to give Baylor a 22-20 lead, cuing Kansas to call a timeout. Fanning and Pressley notched kills and the Jayhawks ended the set with an attack error as Baylor won 25-21 to take a 2-0 lead.

The two teams battled back and forth to start the third set, but a 3-0 run by the Bears put them up 9-5 as Kansas called for a timeout. Kills by Jackson and Milana and an attack error by the Jayhawks gave Baylor a 15-10 lead midway through the third set.

The Bears finished the third set on a 13-7 run and Pressley hammered home the final point as Baylor took the match 3-0.

“It was good for us to be healthy and get everyone out on the court and get a sweep,” McGuyre said. “It feels like forever since we’ve gotten a sweep. To do it against a strong opponent is great for us.”

Baylor will look to win their third straight match when they face Oklahoma at 7 p.m. on Nov. 3 in Norman, Okla.