After a 3-0 sweep of Baylor this week, the Longhorns will pack their bags and head to Lubbock to face Texas Tech Saturday.
The No. 9 Longhorns are now 10-3 overall and 3-0 in the Big 12 Conference as a result of Tuesday’s win. Two of those three Big 12 victories were away games, with five freshmen in the rotation.
“It’s tough [to win on the road],” junior setter Hannah Allison said. “We start some freshmen. Luckily they’re surrounded by some veterans, so we’re trying to teach them how to play on the road. We just have to take what we’ve learned in the past and stay calm throughout the entire match regardless of who’s around us or what court we’re on.”
Texas Tech, 11-6 overall and 0-2 in the Big 12, averages slightly more digs per set than Texas and ranks just below the Longhorns in the Big 12 for assists. The Red Raiders will host the Longhorns after five straight losses, the most recent against TCU in Fort Worth. Texas Tech has fallen to Texas in every contest for the past five years.
Texas sophomore outside hitter Haley Eckerman paved the way for victory Tuesday, notching 14 kills, five digs and two blocks. Junior setter Allison tied her career-high five kills and pitched in 30 assists against Baylor, while junior outside hitter Bailey Webster tacked on 11 kills.
Although the Baylor match featured closer games than previous opponents, head coach Jerritt Elliott said the team sticks to its normal routines as it faces opponents on the road.
“I’m really big in terms of our routines,” Elliot said going into the match. “We’ve got to get used to playing in different gyms, so this is a good opportunity for us.”
The start of Big 12 play marked an exciting point in the season for the Longhorns, and Elliott said the team is prepared to fight for its place in the midst of a competitive conference.
“Our ultimate goal always will be to win the Big 12,” Elliott said. “We know that it is a long Big 12 season. We’re going to have some tough battles.”
The Longhorns and Red Raiders face off at 2 p.m. at Texas Tech’s United Spirit Arena.
Printed on Friday, September 28, 2012 as: Perfect in Big 12 play, Horns go to Lubbock