Volleyball team falls to Rice, clinging to postseason chances

More stories from The Parthenon


In its final home game of the season, Marshall University’s volleyball team fell to Rice University Sunday in a 3-0 decision.

The Herd falls to 15-12 (6-8 C-USA) with the loss, while Rice improves to 19-9 (9-5 C-USA).

Marshall was led by sophomore Taylor Pelton with 10 kills and sophomore Kayla Simmons, who registered 31 assists.

The first set began with both teams trading points. However, Rice held onto an advantage through the first portion of the set and costly errors by the Herd helped Rice jump to a three-point lead.

From there, the Rice attack proved to be difficult for the Herd, as it trailed 14-10, forcing Marshall head coach Mitch Jacobs to call a timeout. The Owls went on to claim the first set, 25-17.

Marshall jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the second set, but the Owls forced two errors on the Herd to tie the game at 2-2. The set would go back-and-forth throughout, as neither team would hold a lead larger than two.

Midway through the set, Rice broke away on a five-point run to give itself a five-point lead. After allowing Marshall to bring the game close, Rice responded with five straight points to close out the set, 25-19.

Coming out of the break, the third set began much like the first, with both teams trading points to start. However, Rice would regain control and close out the game, defeating Marshall 25-20 in the final set.

Marshall faces Western Kentucky University 7 p.m. Thursday in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Jacobs said the HIlltoppers will be a major challenge for the team.

“Western Kentucky is a great team,” Jacobs said in a news release. “They’re ranked in the top 25 for a reason. They did lose to Rice recently but responded by defeating FIU earlier this week.”