The UTEP volleyball team swept the Universidad Regional Del Norte Cowgirls in an exhibition match at historic Memorial Gym Saturday afternoon.
The Miners took the first two sets by the identical score of 25-18 before finishing the match in style (25-13). UTEP was led by Cheyenne Jones and Macey Austin with eight kills each. Freshman Kristen Fritsche registered a team-high 21 assists in her first action as a Miner, Austin also produced a squad-best nine digs.
Jones recorded a match-high four total blocks, while Martine Kragholm added a trio of blocks for the Miner defense. Haley Meshay and Austin both contributed two service aces each.
“Today was a great opportunity for our team to see somebody different on the other side of the net,” UTEP head coach Holly Watts said. “We also got to see a lot of different players out on the court. It was a great chance for us to compete well, and to see a lot of different people take swings and get digs.”
UTEP scored the first five points of the match, highlighted by an impressive set by Fritsche and kill from Mallory Yost. URN would close the gap, and get within one point of the Miners with a score of 15 to 14. UTEP outscored URN 10-4 to win the set off of a service ace from Fritsche.
The Miners dug themselves a hole in the second set, with the Cowgirls racing out to an 8-4 advantage. UTEP would regain the lead after a 10-5 run. The Orange and Blue closed the set out with a block assist by Kylie Baumgartner and Austin.
UTEP dominated the final set of the match. The Miners jumped out to a 12-4 lead with stellar defense and strong offensive execution. The URN Cowgirls called a timeout, but it could not slow down the Miners. Ashley Grzebeniak put the finishing touches on the match with a powerful kill off the set from Meshay.
UTEP will open up the 2018 campaign traveling down to the “Big Easy” (New Orleans, La.) to participate in the I-10 Challenge (Aug. 24-25).