Baylor volleyball gears up for Texas in battle of top 10s

Junior middle blocker Kara McGhee is congratulated by teammates after scoring a point against West Virginia Oct. 23 at WVU Coliseum. Photo courtesy of Baylor Athletics

By Gio Gennero | Sports Writer

This Friday and Saturday at the Ferrell Center, No. 10 Baylor volleyball takes on their biggest challenge so far this season facing the top-ranked team in the nation: the undefeated University of Texas (17-0, 8-0 Big 12).

The Bears (13-4, 7-1 Big 12) are 3-2 against ranked teams and are 5-1 at home. Head coach Ryan McGuyre said he’s looking forward to the atmosphere since they’re playing a familiar opponent who is as strong as ever.

“In my seven years, this is the best Texas team that I’ve seen,” McGuyre said. “They’re like us, senior heavy. They’re playing hungry and there’s no holes or weaknesses, we [have] got to play better volleyball than Texas. I feel the same about our team. We are good at every position and we just got to play better volleyball.”

McGuyre said he thinks the timing of the matchup is perfect as it will act as a “quick tune up” before the postseason since this is the caliber of team they will be seeing often if they want to accomplish their goal of winning a national title.

“We need to get after it,” McGuyre said. “No excuses … it is November, it’s time to play and compete.”

Senior setter Hannah Sedwick said they are attacking this game the same as every other match. She said she understands that it will be a good test to see if they are where they want to be.

“It is big,” Sedwick said. “But there’s been a lot of big matches the whole year and I feel like it’s not. It’s just another match for us on the way to where we want to be, which is the national championship and before that, the conference championship. It’s just another match against a very good team.”

Sedwick also agreed that it’s the perfect time to play an opponent like UT while the Bears gear up for the postseason.

“In the postseason we will see a bunch of tough teams,” Sedwick said. “This is a perfect time to play a team like Texas. We have a bunch of matches under our belt, but we still have a lot of time to continue to grow.”

Senior outside hitter Yossiana Pressley said she is excited to play Texas for the fifth time in her collegiate career. Friday’s game is a white-out game in the Ferrell Center where everyone in attendance is encouraged to wear white. Pressley said she is excited to play in front of a packed Baylor crowd.

“It’s super exciting to play Texas,” Pressley said. “We’re playing them for the fifth time this year. It’s awesome to have them here and have that Baylor crowd behind us. It’s going to be a fun atmosphere and I’m excited to play this match with my teammates … we’re the two top teams in the Big 12 and we’re both ranked in the top 10, it’s going to be a great match. That atmosphere is going to be electric.”