Youthful Tigers Drop Pair on Opening Day

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Mizzou Volleyball (0-2) fell in a pair of hard-fought matches, 3-0 to Saint Louis and 3-1 to Kansas City on Friday (Aug. 27) to open the 2021 season at the Mizzou Invitational.

 Junior outside hitter Anna Dixon and freshman middle blocker Kayla Burbage led the Mizzou attack in each match, but the young Tigers were unable to match the experience of the veteran-laden Billikens and Roos.

MATCH ONE: SLU 3, Mizzou 0

Mizzou dropped the season opener 25-20, 25-19, 25-23, to Saint Louis which rode a 21-kill performance from Maya Taylor. The Tigers were led by Dixon with 10 kills and a .381 hitting percentage.

The Billikens used a strong serve to keep pressure on the Tigers, recording 10 aces in the match. SLU’s serve also kept Mizzou out of system, leading to 10 total blocks for the Billikens.

Burbage led all players in the match with five blocks in her debut. She added six kills and three service aces to provide a bright spot for the Tigers.  

MATCH TWO:  KC 3, MIZZOU 1

In the nightcap, Mizzou fell in a tight 25-18, 25-23, 16-25, 28-26, affair to Kansas City. Dixon and Burbage led the Black & Gold with 19 and 15 kills, respectively. Both hit over .400 with Burbage pacing all players in the match with a .542 hitting percentage. Freshman Kaylee Cox added another 12 kills to the Mizzou effort.

Another sluggish start saw Mizzou in a 2-0 hole before the Tigers began to rally. Dixon guided the young Tigers in the third set with four kills and seven digs to get Mizzou back in the match with the 25-16 set.

Dixon posted another eight kills in the fourth set but the Roos staved off three Mizzou set points before closing the match with a 3-0 run.

#MIZ Takeaways

  • Mizzou’s defeat in the opener against SLU snapped a streak of 13 straight season-opening victories for the Tigers.
  • Eight players made their debuts in Black & Gold on opening day.
  • Dixon recorded 29 kills on the day while hitting .418 to lead the Tigers.
  • Sophomore Emily Brown recorded double-digit digs in both matches, finishing the day with a team-leading 27.

UP NEXT

Mizzou faces Creighton in the finale of the Mizzou Invitational on Saturday at 3 p.m. in the Hearnes Center. The match will stream on SEC Network+.

Visit MUTigers.com for the latest information on all things Mizzou Volleyball. You can also find the Tigers on social media by liking us on Facebook (Mizzou Volleyball) and following us on Twitter (@MizzouVB) and Instagram (MizzouVB).

This article is provided by University of Missouri Athletics