Wyoming Volleyball Earns First Victory Of The Season

Aug. 29, 2003

Waco, Texas. - In their second match of the day, the Wyoming Cowgirl Volleyball Team (1-1 overall) evened up their record on Friday night with a three-game victory against the Ole Miss Lady Rebels (0-1 overall), at the Baylor Classic in Waco, Texas, by the scores of 30-21, 30-24, 30-27.

Ole Miss started off the match strong by scoring the first four points of game one, but Wyoming answered with a 7-1 run to take a two point advantage. The Lady Rebels rallied back with some points of their own to tie it up at ten and the battle was on. No team could seem to gain any momentum as there were four ties through the first 28 points. With the Cowgirls up 16-14, they would go on another 6-1 run to open up a 22-16 margin which would grow to eight points. Scoring the final eight of eleven points the Cowgirls took the first game on a game ending service ace from Michele Rauter, 30-21. Rauter led all Cowgirls with six kills and six digs in the game.

Game two seemed to start off very similar to the first with Ole Miss taking the early 4-1 lead and the Cowgirls coming back to tie it up and take the lead. With the score tied at seven all momentum seemed to shift Wyoming's way as they went on a 7-2 run to take their largest lead of the game 14-9. The Lady Rebels battled back with some points of their own to close within two points twice and that's as close as they would get. Despite not overpowering Ole Miss, the Cowgirls took the second game 30-23 and a 2-0 lead in the match.

The Lady Rebels seemed to be the team that stormed out in the third game by going on a 9-4 run including a stretch of five points in a row. They would maintain a three to four point lead despite some good play from the Cowgirls. Things seemed to shift towards the Wyoming as they pulled to within two points 20-18, but Old Miss always seemed to have an answer. It looked like they had the game in hand 26-22, but the Cowgirls had one more push left in them by scoring the last eight of nine points to win the game 30-27 and the match 3-0.

"It was nice to get the first victory of the season," said head coach Jim Barnes. "This tournament has proven to be a valuable experience for us, and I think Michele Rauter has shown some gutty performances coming back from an injury. To be our best we need to continue to have players like Leah Powers and Sara Maytorena be a consistent force for us."

It was a career high night for one Cowgirl as Leah Powers finished the night with 17 kills and a .500 hitting percentage. Michele Rauter also recorded another double-double with ten kills and ten digs. The Cowgirls hit .261 (59-24-134) for the match.

Ole Miss was led by Elena Garcia, who recorded 12 kills and ten digs. They finished with a .192 (42-18-125) hitting percentage and outblocked the Cowgirls 7-6.

Wyoming will finish up the tournament tomorrow against the host school Baylor Bears, on Saturday afternoon, at 1:30 p.m. Mountain Time.