The University of Memphis volleyball team (11-3) lost both American Athletic Conference games over the weekend. The Tigers have now lost three straight games after going 11-0 to start the season.
Memphis traveled to New Orleans Friday to face the Tulane Green Wave and came up short with a 2-3 defeat.
Tulane won the first two sets by 25-12 and 25-21, but the Tigers answered with two of their own sets by scores of 25-23 and 25-22. The final set was a close call, but the visiting team came up short and dropped the set 16-14.
“A really good battle tonight after getting down early,” Sean Burdette said in a press release. “The team played hard for each other, and our serving and passing put us in a position to win points.”
Bianco was the highlight player for Memphis. She posted 54 assists and 21 digs against the Green Wave. That was her first 50-plus assist game in her collegiate career. The transfer from New Mexico recorded her fifth double-double of the season Friday.
Meredith Wallace was the team’s leader in kills for the match with 19. She also had 14 digs in the contest, which was a career-high and Wallace’s fourth career double-double. Sabria Cooper continues improving with 13 kills (career-high) against Tulane. She also had three blocks in the game.
“Sabria was big for us and came out swinging and was second in kills,” Burdette said.
The Tigers traveled to Houston Sunday and lost 3-2 in another close matchup. The Cougars won the match by scores of 15-25, 25-23, 23-25, 25-16 and 17-15.
“Another match that came down to the wire,” Burdette said. “We made many great plays in spurts, but we have to play there all the time.”
After posting a career-high in kills the night before, the freshman, Cooper, topped that performance in the loss to Houston. She had 17 kills, which is the best by a freshman this season, passing Gigi Crescenzo with 14.
Wallace added 14 kills and 11 digs to make it her fifth double-double performance on the season for Memphis. She has 124 kills on the road, and only 46 kills at home this season, which shows why she has been performing great away from Elma Roane Fieldhouse.
Bianco also topped her career-high performance in assists with 60. That was her first 60-plus assists game in her career and most by a Tiger since 2013 when Veronica Zimmerman dished out 65 against South Florida. She also had 17 digs defensively, and it was Bianco’s sixth double-double of the season.
The American Athletic Association announced Monday that Sabrina Bianco was named on the AAC Weekly Honor Roll. She had 114 assists and 38 digs total over the weekend. This is the third Tiger to receive that award this season as Wallace and Hannah Flowers were the others. She is second in the AAC in assists with 567 and third in assists per set with 10.5.
Memphis returns home for their AAC home-opening weekend. On Friday they play host to Wichita State at 7 p.m. and Sunday against Tulsa at 1 p.m.