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The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Volleyball takes 18th loss of season in Iron Bowl rematch 

Courtesy of UA Athletics

Alabama volleyball fell for the 17th straight time this season Wednesday, in an Iron Bowl game.  

Volleyball traveled to Auburn this week for redemption after losing to Auburn earlier in the season. Unfortunately, the game unfolded as a 3-0 sweep for Auburn, leaving Alabama with its 17th consecutive loss.  

“I’m disappointed in our performance,” head coach Rashinda Reed said. “I feel like we had poor execution, and I just felt like we just didn’t pay with any passion or drive, which is really frustrating to see as a coach because I know that those are things that they have inside of them, and not being able to do it with another opponent, it’s just tough.” 

The Crimson Tide started the first set with promise, scoring four consecutive points to take an early 4-1 lead over Auburn. However, the Tigers swiftly turned the tide, responding with seven straight points to seize control. Auburn maintained its lead throughout the set, claiming a decisive 25-14 victory. 

Set 2 saw a more closely fought battle, with Alabama staying within reach in the early stages. Nevertheless, Auburn gradually widened the gap, securing a 20-25 win and a 2-0 lead in the match.  

The Tigers maintained their momentum into the third set, as they took an early lead and secured a 25-18 victory, completing the sweep. 

Alabama’s defense found it hard to halt the Tigers’ scoring as Auburn’s duo of pin hitters Madison Scheer and Akasha Anderson racked up 27 combined kills.  

Auburn consistently disrupted Alabama’s rhythm and managed to get the Crimson Tide out of its system, resulting in inconsistent hitting and a low .075 hitting percentage for Alabama. 

Alabama struggled offensively, with only 31 kills, compared with Auburn’s 44. Key players such as middles Alyiah Wells and Chaise Campbell and outside hitter Kendyl Reaugh had some of their lowest hitting percentages of the season with a combined percentage of .134. Outside hitter Kaleigh Palmer, a new addition to the Crimson Tide’s starting line, dipped to -.133. 

Although she played for only one set, outside hitter Sami Jacobs boosted Alabama’s hitting percentage with a .500, the highest of the night by far.  

Because of the offense’s struggle, the defense also struggled with 44 digs, primarily from libero Victoria Schmer, and five blocks — four assisted and one solo. Wells led in blocks with one block solo and two assists.  

But despite this, Auburn also proved to be a defensive powerhouse with 57 digs, although with three block solos and 14 block assists on the Crimson Tide’s offense.   

“I think it’s about execution as well; I felt like we were not able to be terminal,” Reed said. “I think just defensively, I thought that we weren’t slowing balls down and we weren’t digging balls up. So it’s really hard to play volleyball when the ball’s not still in the air.” 

Even though Alabama had faced this opponent before, it still struggled to execute the crucial points necessary for victory. Its inability to improve in these critical areas ultimately led it to fall short once again. 

“I think it was being aggressive of the block, being aggressive of the service line and executing,” Reed said. “Those are things that we wanted to bring, and I just felt like we just fell short with that.” 

Both teams were evenly matched in service errors, with six each, providing a silver lining for Alabama. Despite its season-long struggle with service aces, it avoided accumulating more errors than its opponent. 

The team is set to face its last opponent of the season in a rematch against Texas A&M this Saturday in Foster Auditorium at noon CT. 

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