The No. 1 Texas Longhorns clinched the Big 12 Conference title outright with a sweep of the Kansas State Wildcats (25-20, 25-19, 25-15) Saturday at Gregory Gym in front of 4,284 fans. Junior Khat Bell registered a match-high 13 kills as Texas (21-2, 14-0) extended its winning streak to 17. This is Texas’ third consecutive Big 12 title and sixth in the last seven seasons.
Senior setter Hannah Allison posted a match-high 40 assists to set up the Longhorn attack. The All-American duo of Haley Eckerman and Bailey Webster notched 10 and 12 kills, respectively, as Texas outhit Kansas State .379 to .180.
Texas caught fire in the opening set, jumping out to an early 7-2 lead. Eckerman led the attack with six kills in the first game. The Longhorns used a balanced attack with five different players registering kills. Kansas State rallied to close within four points at 24-20, but a service error clinched the set for Texas.
Kansas State and Texas battled it out in the second, with 15 ties and five lead changes. However, the odds were in Texas’ favor when Chiaka Ogbogu’s kill made it 20-18 Texas. The Longhorns would go on to win five of the next six points to win the second set 25-19.
Texas closed out the Wildcats with a decisive 25-15 win in the third. Eckerman notched back-to-back kills to put the Longhorns up 16-6 for their largest lead of the match. Bell finished it off with consecutive kills to give Texas the win.
With the victory, Texas won the Big 12 Conference title outright for the third straight year. The Longhorns also shared the regular-season title in both 2007 and 2008, and this is UT’s sixth conference crown in the last seven seasons. UT has lost just six sets in 14 conference matches.
The Longhorns have won 48 consecutive Big 12 conference matches in Gregory Gym dating back to Nov. 1, 2008, when they swept the Texas A&M Aggies. Additionally, UT has won 59 of its last 61 league matches.