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Miners double up on wins at the Don; Oklahoma next

The UTEP volleyball team picked up a pair of wins on Friday, downing Brown 3-2 (24-26, 25-15, 25-22, 25-27, 15-11)  earlier in the day and then later defeating Robert Morris 3-1 (25-12, 24-26, 25-20, 25-18) at the Don Haskins Center.

With the two wins, the Miners improve to a 4-5 record while Brown moves to 2-4 and Robert Morris to 5-4.

 Match 1 vs. Brown

Both teams managed to keep it close throughout the entire five-set match. The score tied 32 times and had 11 lead changes. The Bears took the first set 26-24 but the Miners retaliated with a dominating win in the second and third sets (25-10, 25-22). Fighting to stay in the game, Brown came back claiming the third stanza 27-25. In the fifth frame, the score tied 10 times and had four lead changes but UTEP outperformed Brown and took the set 15-11 and the match 3-2.

Four Miners (Talia Jones, Lindsey Larson, Sarah Villa) recorded career-highs in the victory over the Bears. Senior outside hitter Talia Jones notched 24 kills while defensive specialist Sarah Villa registered  35 digs. Junior Lindsey Larson posted an outstanding 62 assists along with 27 for her seventh double-double.

Match 2 vs. Robert Morris

UTEP did not waste any time in the second match of the day picking up a 25-12 first set over the Colonials. Robert Morris retaliated by winning the second frame 26-24 but the Miners did not allow that to kill their momentum. UTEP rallied from the deficit to win the third set 25-20. After falling behind 5-3 in the fourth frame, the Orange and Blue went on a 7-1 run and never looked back.  The Miners claimed the set and the match 3-1.

Coline Coessens led the team in kills (17) while defensive specialist Sarah Villa posted a team-best 20 digs.  Lindsey Larson posted another match-high with 49 assists while adding 17 digs for her eighth double-double of the season.

The Miners will round up the Borderland Invitational tomorrow at the Don Haskins Center as they take on Big 12 opponent Oklahoma at 12 p.m.

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