Dakota Kaufman posted nine kills as the K-State volleyball team representing Team USA at the World University Games put a scare into host and tournament favorite Russia, who prevailed though 25-16, 25-23, and 25-19. Chelsea Keating added seven kills, while Kaitlynn Pelger had six. Katie Brand, the Cats’ redshirt freshman setter, led the way with 19 digs, Keating had 15, Tristan McCarty came up with 12, and Pelger contributed 10.
The Russians controlled the first set by scoring seven of the first eight points, and never looked back. K-State came back to play inspired volleyball in the second set, building their lead to five points on a number of occasions. The Cats were on the verge of winning a set from Russia with a 22-17 lead, but the Russians took advantage of three K-State hitting errors to run off the next seven points and build a 24-22 lead. A kill by Keating pulled the Cats to within one, but Russia snuck out with a two-point win. Much like the first set, the Russians controlled the final set as K-State could get no closer than four points in the closing moments.
Pool play at the World University Games has concluded, and K-State will have Thursday off before taking the floor on Friday in the consolation quarterfinals against Slovakia at 9:00am central time.