San Antonio – As the fourth set of Thursday’s volleyball match against the University of Texas-Permian Basin neared an end, the chatter picked up in the St. Mary’s University huddle.
Gulp – it’s heading to a fifth game.
“We’ve talked about that we’re not a five-game team,” said Adrianna Keys (Jr., San Antonio), whose Rattlers entered with an 0-5 record in five-game matches.
“But we put it out of our head. We told ourselves to be ready and go head, and to leave it all on the floor.”
Doing just that, the Rattlers finally got past their five-game bugaboo, slipping past UTPB 3-2 (24-26, 25-20, 25-19, 17-25, 15-11) at Bill Greehey Arena.
Trading victories over the first four sets, neither team seemed to enter the fifth set with much momentum over the other. Yet the Rattlers (8-13, 3-4 in Heartland Conference) surged to a 10-1 lead in the fifth game, before holding on to clinch a hard-earned 15-11 victory.
Mallory Moeller (Jr., Geronimo, Texas) led all players with 15 kills, while Stephanie Flores (Jr., San Antonio) posted a game-high-tying 31 digs.
Karlie Ortega (Fr., San Antonio) chipped in with 12 kills and 12 digs, while Kori McCarver (Sr., San Antonio) added 39 assists to go along with 11 digs.
Keys had eight kills and six blocks, while Stephanie Proske (Jr., LaGrange, Texas) and Kirsten Chapman (Jr., Jourdanton, Texas) had seven kills apiece.
The Rattlers had a season-high 12 service aces, led by McCarver’s four.
St. Mary’s returns to the court for a pair of matches Saturday, beginning at Noon at Bill Greehey Arena.
They’ll enter knowing they no longer have to worry about the match going five games.
“It always gives us the jitters,” Keys said. “But this time we did it.”