TU sports journalist Tristan Peterson delivers the scoop on Tulsa’s up and down week that included some shining individual performances.
Earlier this week, Tulsa fell to Cincinnati, ending its perfect home record on the season. Tulsa struggled to find a rhythm in the first and second set but managed a comeback in the third frame before ultimately losing in the fourth. Despite the defeat, Emily Thorson managed 11 kills in the match, while Mariah Pardo had a double-double with 12 assists and 10 digs.
As if turning a complete 180, Tulsa closed out the match against East Carolina University with fierce confidence. Tulsa was strong both offensively and defensively in the first set, keeping ECU’s hitting average to .160; Tulsa took the set 25-11. The second frame was a long rally, but Tulsa was able to clinch the set after forcing three attack errors from ECU 29-25. Even though Rachel Moore had five kills the Pirates stole the third set 25-23. In the final set, Tulsa won 25-19 with help from Pardo. She recorded four kills and had a hitting percentage of .667 for the set.
Sunday’s match was quite the achievement for the ladies of Tulsa volleyball. Taylor Horsfall paced the team with 17 digs while Rachel Moore recorded a double-double with 10 kills and 13 digs. Maggie Hembree had 11 kills and a hitting percentage of .435 for the matchup. Mariah Pardo tallied a career-high seven kills, but the most exciting milestone of the match belonged to the senior Thorson, who recorded her 1,000th career kill. She is the seventh TU athlete in program history to hit the milestone. She earned her second American Athletic Conference weekly honor roll bid the previous Monday for her offensive performance on the road against USF and UCF, where she racked up 32 kills. Thorson posted a career-high six service aces en route to leading Tulsa to a 3-1 win over USF.
Tulsa scored 98 points to ECU’s 74 and moves to third in conference standings with a 5-2 mark in conference play and a 13-6 overall record. Tulsa heads to Texas this week for two key conference matches against Houston on Oct. 19 and SMU on Oct. 21.