Outside hitter Sarah Brown's 16 kills helped lead Xavier to a three-set win at Butler.
Oct. 19, 2012
INDIANAPOLIS - Alex Smith and Sarah Brown each posted 16 kills in Xavier's three-set win (25-18, 25-20, 25-22) at Atlantic 10-newcomer Butler on Friday night. Xavier improves to 14-9 on the season, including 6-2 in conference, and Butler falls to 12-10 (2-6 A-10).
Smith registered 16 kills on just 25 attempts without a single hitting error on the night en route to recording a whopping .640 hitting percentage. The middle blocker has a .368 hitting percentage on the season, which ties Sara Bachus as the fourth-best in program history. Even more impressively, Smith has a .483 hitting percentage in conference play.
Brown notched 16 kills and hit .293 on the evening, while adding eight digs. As a team, the Musketeers combined for a .301 hitting percentage and held the Bulldogs to .231.
"I'm very proud of our effort tonight," said head coach Mike Johnson. "We were in a tough environment against a team that refused to quit. Butler tested us and I'm thrilled with the way we responded."
Xavier opened a sizeable margin, 13-3, in the first set, but allowed Butler to make a run and cut the deficit to three points. However, Smith closed out the set, 25-18, with back-to-back kills.
In game two the Musketeers put some distance between themselves and the Bulldogs with a 7-3 start. Brown paced Xavier's attack with eight kills in the set as Xavier went up by two games with a 25-20 win headed into intermission.
The Musketeers went up, 12-8, in the third game, but saw Butler work back to tie the game at 20. After both teams exchanged points, kills by Smith, Brown and Aubree Smith were followed with a ball-handling error by Butler to close out the set and match, 25-22.
Aubree Smith finished the match with 42 assists, the 17th time in her career that she has eclipsed the 40 assist mark in a match. She now has 1,996 assists in her brief two years at Xavier, a mark that ranks ninth all-time at Xavier.
Stephanie Vorherr passed a match-high 17 digs. The senior libero now has 1,978 digs in her career and is poised to pass the 2,000-dig plateau. Vorherr, already XU's career-record holder, has her sights set on the A-10 mark of 2,080 set by La Salle's Carolyn Judge.
Xavier travels to Saint Louis for a Saturday evening tilt against the Billikens, with the match slated to begin at 8 p.m. ET. It's been nearly seven years since Xavier has won in Saint Louis. The last Musketeer win in St. Louis came on Nov. 6, 2005.