By Gio Gennero | Sports Writer
No. 18 Baylor volleyball made quick work of No. 22 Rice University, dispatching them in only three sets to complete its 10th sweep of the season. The green and gold went 25-18, 25-22 and 25-17 to bring their record to 15-3, 4-1 Big 12.
“Really loved the team effort and consistency,” head coach Ryan McGuyre said. “Rice is a phenomenal team, extremely well-coached. They’re going to be a good [NCAA] tournament team this year. So, to come on the road, in their house and get out of here in three-straight sets is really huge for us. I liked our serve receive game, did a much better job on defense. Elise [McGhee] really kind of carried us through the first set or two and we got good production again from our middles. Great team effort, but felt like our best serves were in the late part of all three sets and helped create separation for us.”
The first set started off as a close one, with the Bears holding a 9-7 lead. However, they began to pull away as play continued, taking a 17-11 lead midway through. They held onto control of the set on their way to winning the set 25-18.
Rice came in the second set firing away, but Baylor was able to hold on and keep things tied at 8-8. The contest remained back-and-forth, staying even at 17-17. The Bears were able to keep the Owls at a distance and came away with the set victory 25-22.
In the final set, the Bears wasted no time separating themselves from the opposition, going up 12-5 early. Rice tried to make pushes to cut the lead, but Baylor didn’t let up and kept things rolling for a 25-17 win.
Up next, Baylor returns to the Ferrell Center for its anticipated matchup with No. 1 University of Texas at 2 p.m. Saturday.