Despite silencing the 4,000 spectators at Gregory Gymnasium throughout the match, the Texas A&M volleyball team lost to third-ranked Texas in straight sets 26-24, 27-25 and 25-22.
With the loss, the Aggies finish non-conference play at 8-2, and the Longhorns finish at 6-2.
The Aggies held a 16-11 lead in the first set, but were unable to hold off a motivated Longhorn team that was coming off an upset loss to Rice on Wednesday. The set was a back-and-forth battle until Texas finally pulled away with the set tied at 24.
A&M had a 22-16 lead in the second set, but allowed Texas to go on an 8-2 run to tie the set at 24. The Aggies faced two match points but were unable to secure the win.
What seemed to be an inevitable third set loss, the Aggies took an early 15-10 lead in the third set, prompting the Longhorns to take a timeout. Texas dominated and the Aggies struggled for the remainder of the set and ultimately lost the match.
“We walk away knowing we have to finish,” A&M head coach Laura “Bird” Kuhn told 12thman.com. “You know, our team executed at a high level. All three sets were 20 all and that's when you have to execute at your best, but we didn't do that. There's definitely positive, but at the end of the day, you have to finish.”
The Aggies were led by stellar performances from outside hitters senior Hollann Hans, who recorded 18 kills, two service aces, and nine digs. Freshman Lauren Davis had 13 kills and two blocks.
Junior setter Camille Conner had 37 assists while also recording three kills and a service ace. Senior libero Camila Gomez had eight digs and a service ace, and junior Makena Patterson had a team-high four blocks.
In spite losing to the Longhorns, the Aggies experienced a record-breaking performance from Hans, who broke the A&M all-time points record. Hans passed Jazzmin Babers, who previously held the record with 1,456 points.
"Hollann's solid,” Kuhn said. “She's been a six rotation player and is a huge impact. She played well tonight."
Kuhn also said that playing at Texas to wrap-up the non-conference slate was pivotal for her squad going forward.
"It's a great environment to put our team in front of,” Kuhn said. “You want to gain experience and learn from winning and losing.”
The Aggies will kickoff conference play Tuesday night against Alabama at Reed Arena. The match is set for 8 p.m. and will be televised on ESPNU.