San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

Texas State’s Ashlee Hillbun (10) and Amari Deardorff (3) celebrate a point. TEXAS STATE SPORTS INFORMATION PHOTO


The Texas State volleyball team registered a big win in Little Rock Friday and now is positioned to, perhaps, enter the Sun Belt Conference Tournament next week as the No. 2 seed.

The Bobcats beat Arkansas-Little Rock (UALR) in five sets by scores of 18-25, 25-21, 24-26, 26-24, 15-12. With the result, UALR remains the league’s second-place team at 12-5, but the Bobcats, in third place, improved to 11-6.

Sunday, the Bobcats finish their regular season at Arkansas State, while UALR ends its regular season at Louisiana-Lafayette (ULL). Arkansas State and ULL each are 8-9 this year in the Sun Belt. If Texas State wins and UALR loses, then they would finish tied for second place at 12-6, but the Bobcats would own the tiebreaker.

The Sun Belt Conference Tournament happens Thursday through Saturday at Troy.

Texas State’s Amari Deardorff took over the fifth set at UALR with five kills, outhitting both of the top two Trojans combined, to propel Texas State to victory and improve the Bobcats to 21-11 overall.

With the deciding fifth set tied, 9-9, Deardorff devastated UALR with consecutive kills for an 11-9 lead to force a UALR timeout. The Trojans scored out of the timeout, but Deardorff answered with her third kill in four points and her team high 18th kill of the night.

After that, Ashlee Hilbun took over with Texas State’s final three kills and the last two kills of the match to clinch it for Texas State.

The two seniors combined for 30 kills, both hitting .300 or higher. Each player had stretches of the match in which she could not be stopped. Hilbun also did much of the stopping as she finished with a team-high seven blocks to help Texas State tally 12 for the night. Three other Bobcats had at least three blocks or more.

Texas State’s Kelsey Weynand finished with 12 kills and 14 digs for her second double-double of the year. Libero Sierra Smith led the Bobcats in digs with 17, while Caylin Mahoney finished with 32 assists, 11 digs and seven kills along with three blocks, just three kills short of her second triple-double of the season.

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A version of this story was published in Bobcat Magazine.

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