Dec. 4, 2010

Courtesy of Texas Athletics

AUSTIN, Texas - The sixth-ranked Texas Volleyball team used a 17-kill performance by senior All-America outside hitter Juliann Faucette and freshman setter Hannah Allison returned from injury to steady the lineup as UT downed No. 9 UCLA, 3-1 in the NCAA Second Round. The victory improved the Horns winning streak to 17 matches and advanced the Longhorns to their fifth-straight NCAA Regional.

The Longhorns 25-23, 20-25, 25-18, 25-24 win improved Texas to 25-5 on the year, while UCLA fell to 22-9. Texas moves on to the NCAA Austin Regional where it will host eighth-seeded Illinois on Friday, Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. Central.

Faucette headlined the Texas attack with 17 kills on .256 hitting and added six digs and a pair of solo blocks. Junior middle blocker Rachael Adams added 12 kills and hit .611 in the win, while junior outside hitter Amber Roberson connected for 10 kills and collected 11 digs. Allison returned to the lineup in the third set with the Horns trailing 4-0 and rallied UT to victory with 24 assists and eight digs.

In the first, Texas fell behind in the early going, but took advantage of three UCLA errors that paced a 4-1 and gave UT a 9-7 edge. The Horns widened the margin to 17-14 when a service ace by sophomore opposite hitter Sha'Dare McNeal capped a 3-0 rally. The Bruins fought back to knot the game at 21 on a kill by Bojana Todorovic before kills by Adams and Faucette and two UCLA miscues closed the set, 25-23.

The Longhorns allowed a 5-1 Bruins run to start the second, allowing them to grab a 7-4 lead. UCLA widened the lead 12-8 on two kills by Rachael Kidder, but Texas didn't quit, posting a 4-1 rally to narrow the margin to one at the 14-13 mark. A 5-1 Bruins' rally pushed the lead to 21-16 before UCLA went on to close out the set 25-20.

Texas dug itself a large 6-1 hole to begin the third frame and Allison was inserted into the game with UT trailing 4-0. Following a Kidder kill at the 6-1 mark, the Horns mounted a 10-1 rally headlined by two kills and two aces by Roberson that put UT in front 11-7. UCLA briefly narrowed the lead to one prior to Texas posting a 9-2 run capped by a McNeal/Adams double-block that ballooned the lead to 20-12. McNeal bolstered the Horns' attack down the stretch and Faucette connected for two-straight kills to close the set and lift UT to a 25-18 win.

In the fourth and decisive set, Texas took control early with Faucette keying a 3-0 run that put UT ahead, 7-4. UCLA tied the set at 11 before Faucette fueled a 4-0 run with a solo block and a kill that pushed the tally to 15-11. The Longhorns held a 19-15 lead later in the stanza before UCLA's Sara Sage paced a 6-1 rally that put the Bruins on top, 21-20. Trailing 24-23, Texas answered the bell with two-straight points. A kill by Dicey McGraw evened the set at 24 before Adams and Faucette connected on back-to-back kills to end the frame, 26-24.