No. 5 USC Bullies Bulldogs to Win Trojan Invitational
Sept. 1, 2012
LOS ANGELES - In a match that lasted just over an hour, the fifth-ranked USC women's volleyball team (6-0) completed a three-set victory (25-13, 25-10, 25-12) against Mississippi State (2-4) at the Galen Center to win the 2012 Luxe City Center Trojan Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 1.
Senior opposite hitter Katie Fuller had 10 kills (1e, 20att) and posted a .450 hitting percentage as the Women of Troy won their second consecutive preseason tournament. It was the third of three complete matches by Fuller who was named the tournament's most valuable player. Junior libero Natalie Hagglund had 12 digs against the Bulldogs and freshman outside hitter Samantha Bricio had 11 kills (1e, 20att, .500) and were each selected to the all-tournament team.
Sophomore setter Hayley Crone posted her third double-double in as many matches as she registered 31 assists and 11 digs to go with a career-best four service aces. Crone's setting allowed the Trojans to hit at a season-high .472 percentage with 45 kills (3e, 89att) while the USC defense held MSU to a .105 outing with just 23 kills (14e) on 86 swings.
Sarah Nielsen had five kills (1e, 18att, .222) for the Bulldogs and was named to the all-tournament team for her all-around weekend performance. Nielsen was joined by Krista DeGeest and Shelby Kintzel of Northern Iowa, and Katty Workman of Boston College.
The Trojans showed they meant business right from the get-go as a kill by junior outside hitter Sara Shaw pushed USC ahead by 10 points at 19-9 in the first set. USC never trailed as it had 15 kills (1e, 34att) to post a .412 hitting percentage with six of those kills from the hand of Fuller.
It was more of the same in the second set, but this time it was Bricio who had six kills (0e, 9att) for a .667 hitting percentage. Again, the Trojans never trailed and posted a .571 hitting percentage with 17 kills (1e, 28att) on the way to a 25-10 win. The only time the Bulldogs scored more than one point in a row, they went from seven to nine, but had their momentum stopped by two straight kills by freshman outside hitter Kiara Wright.
There would be no letdown in the third set as USC cruised to a 25-12 win behind a .444 hitting percentage (13k, 1e, 27att). Shaw had four kills (0e, 7att, .571) while sophomore opposite Emily Young came in and got four kills of her own (0e, 5att, .800). Mississippi State hit at a .231 rate (9k, 3e, 26att) but it wasn't enough as Crone scored four straight service aces right before Young's kill from a Crone set put the match away.
Next weekend, the Trojans host the USC Classic Tournament and welcome in Cal Poly, Notre Dame, and San Diego for a six-match tournament that begins when the Mustangs facing face the Fighting Irish in a 4:30 p.m. PT match on Friday, Sept. 7. The Women of Troy face San Diego in a 7 p.m. match later that evening. Please visit www.USCTrojans.com for more information and links to GameTracker and live audio streaming.
2012 LUXE CITY CENTER TROJAN INVITATIONAL ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM