SAN ANTONIO – Kelsey Carpenter had a team-high 15 kills at a .433 batting average as UTSA fended off a late two-set rally from Houston Baptist to defeat the Huskies in five sets Friday afternoon as part of the Courtyard Marriott-presented Roadrunner Classic.
The Roadrunners (4-6) took an early two-set lead on the Houston Baptist (7-4) thanks to a strong first two sets from Carpenter. Katelyn Krienke and Alicia Coppedge. Carpenter (8), Coppedge (6) and Krienke (5) led the UTSA offensive attack, which was supported by Courtney Walters 24 early templates.
After losing sets three and four, UTSA responded with a win in set five over Houston Baptist, winning the match 3-2. The five-set match was UTSA’s second consecutive five-set match.
First Set (UTSA:25-14:HBU)
UTSA took an early 10-4 lead in the first set and forced an HBU timeout with a 4-0 run. The Roadrunners kept up the pressure and beat the Huskies 15-10 in the rest of the first set. The Roadrunners had an even scoring offense in the first set as four players had at least three kills. Carpenter (4) led the way while Coppedge, Ifeanyi and Walters followed with three each. UTSA finished with 17 kills in the set at a .635 batting average, the highest in a single set of the year.
Second Set (UTSA:25-23:HBU)
Houston Baptist played UTSA to a much closer set in the second verse as neither team was able to pull away and gain momentum. Carpenter again had a huge set for the Roadrunners as the junior outside hitter had four kills on six attempts to attack with a block assist to lead UTSA. Brooke Hirsch had seven digs while Walters had 11 assists on the set.
Third Set (HBU: 25-17: UTSA)
The third set saw a back and forth, starting with five draws and two lead changes before the Huskies gained some control and found themselves with a 16-10 lead. UTSA had the fewest kills in a 25-point set that day, mustering just 12 against HBU. Carpenter again had team high kills in the set when she connected with Hunter Coppola at three. Walters turned over her second straight set with 11 assists as she moved up to 35th on the day.
Fourth Set (HBU: 25-20: UTSA)
Houston Baptist continued their third set in the fourth frame when it knocked down UTSA to end the match by two. The Roadrunners started the fourth set with a three-nothing run only to watch HBU counter with an 8-0 run, and the Huskies never looked back. UTSA got things interesting mid-set when the Roadrunners drew within one (13-12) before HBU slammed the door and was able to keep UTSA out.
Fifth Set (UTSA: 15-11: HBU)
After watching the Huskies win two straight sets, the Roadrunners were able to regain control and eventually won the match in the fifth set. After falling 5-2 early on, Cansu Günaydin ensured UTSA wouldn’t lose as the Rutgers transfer had three of UTSA’s eight kills in the set and led the Roadrunner offense to victory.
Tournament Standings (through two games)
Houston Baptist: 0-1
The UTSA will return to the Convocation Center at 7:00 p.m. tonight, September 16, for the face-off against the undefeated Valparaiso Beacons (10-0). The game is UTSA’s military appreciation night and fans are encouraged to dress appropriately for the film’s theme top gun. The game will be streamed on CUSA.tv.