OU volleyball: Sooners sweep Nevada 3-0, running win streak to 7 as Big 12 play looms | Sports


Oklahoma (10-2) extended its scorching win streak to seven games with a 3-0 sweep of Nevada (5-5) Friday night in Norman

Sooners coach Lindsey Gray-Walton detailed the attack strategy for OU’s win over the Wolf Pack afterward.

“We wanted to run through the middle and we knew someone like Morgan Perkins could go off tonight just both in front and behind the center,” Gray-Walton said. “And defensively she had a good night blocking and we’re working on some of our middles back into a rotation so you see all of them.

“And you know, tempo and speed is what kills and kills pay the bills. So we are able to have a lot of different people on the floor.”

OU opened the game aggressively, pressing Nevada’s players into defending attacks with little opportunity to score, winning 25-13. Oklahoma had 15 kills in its first set led by freshman outside hitter Taylor Preston who had 12 in the game.

Nevada’s lack of scoring proved detrimental, relying heavily on points from OU errors, but there weren’t enough mistakes on the Sooners’ side. The Wolf Pack lost the second set 25-19 and the third set 25-18.

Sophomore outside hitter Megan Wilson, junior middle blocker Kelsey Carrington and freshman middle blocker Morgan Perkins operated as the Sooners’ primary defenders, recording three blocks each.

“It kills for us and that’s a nice luxury that we haven’t always had. We also have really good passing and defense that allows us to stay in long rallies, get the senator the ball for her to set it with her hands and not have to bump it and it makes a world of difference.”

Nevada was consistently met with a barrage of attacks in the second set. Freshman outside hitter Alexis Shelton operated as the team energizer, recording aggressive kills to end scoring droughts.

“My word of the year from the coaches is consistency,” Shelton said. “So I just try to be as consistent as possible. I’m still working on it, I just try to do my job in the best way I can.”

Oklahoma’s relentless offense and consistent defensive plays kept it in the lead the entire match. A combo block by Wilson and Carrington was essential in the Sooners maintaining the lead as they went cold for kills deep into the second set.

Subtle adjustments within Nevada’s defense proved pivotal, reducing the Sooners’ attack percentage from 51 in the first set to 35 by the finale. The Wolves were able to make light runs in the third set but Oklahoma pulled away off a kill by Wilson.

“I think we’re ready to destroy conference (play) really,” Shelton said. “I’m really really excited about what this team can be in the future. I’m just excited to make it determined, honestly.”

After closing out nonconference play, Oklahoma will face off against No. 1Texas at 7 pm next Saturday, Sept. 24 in Austin.

“Texas is No. 1, and they deservedly earned that ranking,” Gray-Walton said. “They’re a great team, but there’s also 16 matches in the regular season. So it doesn’t all hang in the balance as of this Texas match. But we need to go in there with the full belief and confidence that as a team, we’re hitting 300 right now as a team. We’re digging 15 balls a set for as a team.

“We’re blocking two and a half balls as a team. We have the ability to go in there and cause some issues for Texas and get a win. And if we believe that, we will play like that, we will sound like that. And that’s just something we’ve been preaching to this group and everything that they do this year and there’s a lot of conviction in what they’re doing.”

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