Aggies Top Buffs In Home Finale
BOULDER— The University of Colorado volleyball team fell in three sets to Texas A&M on Wednesday night in its final home match of the 2009 season at the Coors Events Center. Set scores were 25-21, 25-19 and 25-15.
The Buffs are now 7-21 overall and are 2-17 in the Big 12. The Aggies improved to 17-10 overall and are 10-9 in the league.
It was the final home finale for lone senior and setter Kaitlyn Burkett. Burkett had a good night on defense for the Buffs as she tied a career-high 14 digs in the effort.
"Despite the tough loss tonight, we are pleased to celebrate the career and efforts of a very special player in the history of the Colorado Volleyball program," Colorado coach Liz Kritza said. "We wish we could have pulled out the upset for her tonight, but we still have a lot to celebrate in her time her at CU and we wish her well."
Burkett added 13 assists and three kills. For the second straight match, the Buffs ran a 6-2 offense with two setters, Burkett and Megan Cyr, giving each the opportunity to play offense and defense.
"It's easier to play defense when you have a setter up front," Burkett said. "You have more confidence on defense when you're getting the ball; you have a setter in the front row. We [Burkett & Cyr] are like the dynamic duo."
Becah Fogle led the Buffs with 12 kills, and Sofia Lindroth tied her career-high at CU with 19 digs, which was also a match-high. A&M was led by Mary Batis who recorded 13 kills. Colorado recorded 27 kills and hit .053 in the match, while the Aggies had 45 kills and hit .160.
"We are never satisfied with a losing result, but there were moments of fight and effort that were championship level," Kritza explained. "The more we work to sustain those types of plays, the sooner we will be able to play on a championship level consistently."
A&M took an 11-5 lead to start the first set, but the Buffs stormed back to tie the frame at 16. The Aggies took the next four points before CU used a timeout. Colorado came back with a 3-0 run to get back within one point before falling 25-21. Both teams hit below .100; A&M hit .091 and CU hit .071.
Colorado got out to an 11-8 lead in the second set, but the Aggies put together an 8-2 run to take a 16-13 advantage. The Buffs were unable to get much going offensively after that point and fell 25-19. CU's hitting improved slightly to .095, while the Aggies also hit better at .170.
The Aggies took control of the third set from the beginning; taking a 14-5 lead. Just as the Buffs had been doing all night, they continued to fight and weren't going to go quietly. CU took six of the following eight points to get the score to 16-11, forcing A&M to take a timeout. Out of the timeout, the Aggies took eight of the next nine points to get to match point (24-12). The Buffs fought off three set points before A&M finished the match 25-15.
The Buffs will wrap up the 2009 season on Saturday, November 28, against No. 8 Nebraska in Lincoln, Neb. The match is slated for a 6 p.m. (MST) start.
"I'm so happy that my last match can be in Nebraska against 5,000 Cornhusker fans," Burkett said. "It's such a great atmosphere to play in, and I'm really excited to play there for my last game. Anything is possible; they're definitely a beatable team. They've shown that in the past."
Kritza is also getting ready for the perennial powerhouse and knows that a win against NU would be a great way to end the season.
"We have to prepare ourselves to empty our tanks against a very quality Nebraska team at their place on Saturday, and we will look to end the season on a high note," Kritza said.
And don't forget to check out the latest news and highlights with head coach Liz Kritza on the Buffalo Stampede: Volleyball Edition, exclusively on BuffsTV at CUBuffs.com/volleyball. New shows air every Tuesday.