The Ole Miss volleyball team kept to their winning ways over the weekend against Mississippi State and LSU, extending their win streak to 11 and improving their SEC record to 3-0.
The Rebels came away victorious in a grueling five-set match against Mississippi State in their first match of the weekend Friday.
Ole Miss came out in dominant fashion in the first set, winning 25-9 and never putting the result in doubt. The Rebels were aided by numerous errors from the Bulldogs that dug their hole deeper and deeper.
The second set was far more competitive and saw Mississippi State come away with a wire-to-wire win. After exchanging points back and forth to start the set, the Bulldogs gained a slight edge and managed to keep Ole Miss at arm’s length for the rest of the set.
Their small buffer seemed to give them confidence, and they forced the Rebels to earn their points by cutting down on mistakes and avoiding costly attack errors.
In a familiar position down 2-1 heading into the fourth set, Ole Miss came out of the gates slowly, again falling behind 7-2 early in the set. State continued to control the action for a few points and got themselves out to a 15-11 lead. The Rebels responded with four straight points to close the gap, followed by three straight from the Bulldogs to retake the lead.
After battling to a 20-17 scoreline, Ole Miss strung together three points to tie the set once more before putting the set away 25-23. Senior outside hitter Emily Stroup came up with two big kills late in the set to secure the win and force a decisive fifth set.
The fifth set was the closest of them all and saw the Rebels outlast their rivals 15-12 to secure their first road win in conference play and their fourth straight win against Mississippi State.
Stroup had a match-high 21 kills on a .222 hitting percentage. Senior outside hitter Leah Mulkey recorded 11 kills and three blocks. Senior middle blocker Nayo Warnell racked up 10 kills and three blocks, and junior setter Lauren Bars contributed four kills, 53 assists, 16 digs and three blocks in an all-around performance.
On Sunday, the Rebels took care of business in four sets on the road against LSU.
LSU gave more of a scare in the third set but could not manage to hang with the high-flying Rebs for more than half of the set before falling behind. Because of this, Ole Miss cruised to their 11th straight win, 10 of which have come on the road.
Freshman outside hitter Anna Bair led the Rebels with 15 kills on a .244 clip to go along with five blocks. Stroup added 10 kills, 15 digs and a block. Sophomore middle blocker Aubrey Sultemeier recorded 11 kills and nine blocks, and Mulkey recorded 11 kills and five blocks to round out her successful weekend.
From here, the Rebels travel to Columbia, Missouri, where they will take on the Tigers on Wednesday before returning home to face Auburn on Sunday.