Hurricanes Nearly Downgraded By Rebels

Sept. 14, 2012

Box Score

LOUISVILLE, Ky. ( - The UNLV Rebels (6-4) suffered a 3-1 loss to the Miami Hurricanes (8-1) on Friday afternoon in the first match of the Louisville Invitational played at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Ky. The tightly-contested match featured 18 ties and seven lead changes, which Miami won by set scores of 26-24, 25-19, 17-25, 25-23.

Miami, who is receiving the most votes outside of the AVCA Top 25 Poll this week, out-hit UNLV .254 to .194, but only managed to compile three more kills (61-58) and commit two less errors (23-25) off 16 more swings (186-170). The Hurricanes hit in the .200s in each set that they won, and they topped out with a .263 hitting efficiency in the second stanza - a set they won after taking the lead at the 7-6 mark. The Rebels, on the other hand, topped out at a .417, which came in a third-set victory. UNLV hit .180 and .175 in the first and second frames, respectively, before mustering a .045 in the fourth and final set.

The first set featured the majority of the ties (12) and lead changes (3), all of which occurred after the 10-10 juncture. The Rebels last led the set 18-17, but then watched the Hurricanes rattle off nine of the final 15 points to claim a closely played opening stanza.

After Miami went up 2-0, UNLV came out strong in the third. The Rebels never relinquished the lead after scoring the first point.

The fourth witnessed Miami stake itself to an early 6-0 lead before pushing the cushion to eight points on two instances - the last of which came at 20-12. Facing the eight-point deficit, the Rebels fought back and eventually took a one-point lead at 21-20 by outscoring the Hurricanes 10-1. The following two points were alternated by the teams with the Scarlet & Gray holding its last lead at the 23-22 mark. Unfortunately, the Hurricanes won the final three points to claim the set and match.

UNLV got double-doubles from Kinsey Caldwell, Sekola Falemaka and Stephanie Thelen. Caldwell combined 42 assists and 21 digs for her double-double, while Thelen and Falemaka went the kill-dig route. Thelen and Falemaka both had 14 kills, while the former had 12 digs to the latter's 18.

Falemaka and Thelen weren't the only Rebels to notch double figures in kills, as Katlin Winters and Madeline Westman threw down 14 and 10, respectively.

In all, UNLV had four players reach double digits in digs with Allison Davies' 20 joining the output from Caldwell, Falemaka and Thelen.

Miami got double-doubles from Taylor Hollins (12 kills and 12 digs) and Nrithya Sundararaman (49 assists and 10 digs). Emani Sims led the Hurricanes offensively with 17 kills, while Ryan Shaffer racked up a match-high 23 digs.

UNLV returns to action on Saturday with two more contests at the Invitational. The Rebels open up with #12 Louisville at 8:00 am PT before closing out their trip with a 2:00 pm PT affair with Middle Tennessee State.

Notes: Katlin Winters set career and season highs in kills (14) and attempts (33) ... Sekola Falemaka tied her career high in digs with 18 ... Allison Davies has eight career 20-plus dig matches in her career, while Kinsey Caldwell has one.