Fifth-ranked USC Out-muscles Mustangs in 3-0 Sweep of Cal Poly
LOS ANGELES - The fifth-ranked USC women's volleyball team (8-0) claimed a 3-0 sweep (25-12, 25-23, 25-21) against Cal Poly (1-6) on Saturday, Sept. 8, in the USC Classic Tournament at the Galen Center. A pair of phenomenal freshman performances paced the Trojans as outside hitter Samantha Bricio led all players with 14 kills (1e, 25att, .520) and middle blocker Alicia Ogoms had six of her seven kills (0e, 10att, .700) in the final set.
Sophomore setter Hayley Crone put up her fifth double-double of the season with 32 assists and 11 digs and added two service aces for the Women of Troy. Junior libero Natalie Hagglund led all players with 13 digs and had a service ace as well. Senior opposite hitter Katie Fuller played in just two sets but had four kills (1e, 7att) while hitting .429.
For Cal Poly, Holly Franks led the way with 11 kills (7e, 28att, .143) while three other players earned at least five kills including Megan Groess (5k, 0e, 11att, .455) and Megan McConnell (5k, 0e, 11att, .455).
USC never trailed and was never tied in the first set as it raced out to a 25-12 win. The Trojans went up by six points, 13-7, when Shaw tooled a shot off the Mustang block, but it was Crone who ripped the set open as she served a stretch of five straight points that included a service ace. Junior middle blocker Alexis Olgard and sophomore opposite Emily Young teamed up for a block before Olgard earned a solo block to put the Trojans up by 12 points, 22-10. Olgard got one more block with Crone to give the Trojans set point at 24-11 before a Crone dump sealed the win for USC. The Women of Troy used 13 digs and three blocks to hold Cal Poly to a negative .107 attack percentage in the first set (6k, 9e, 28att).
Just as it appeared the Trojans were going to run off with the second set, the Mustangs stampeded back into the picture with a strong run to tie the set at 15-all. Bricio earned six points to open the set on five kills and a solo block, but USC errors kept Cal Poly in the game. The Trojans tried to pull away once more on Mustang errors, but Cal Poly stayed the course and took its first lead of the set at 20-19 on consecutive service aces. Poly went ahead, 23-22, on a pair of kills by Franks, but a tip-kill from Olgard tied the set for the eighth time at 23-all. Bricio went cross-court twice to seal the final two points for USC who hit .262 in the second set (18k, 7e, 42att).
Cal Poly took control early on in the third set and moved in front by three points, 8-5, on a kill by Groess. Ogoms put an end to the Mustang run, though, as she earned a kill, got in on a block, and claimed another kill on three straight rallies to give USC a 9-8 lead. Cal Poly had an answer as it wrestled the lead away and went up by four points, 20-16, but this time, the Trojans answered back on four straight points to tie the set for the sixth time at 20-all. Two Bricio kills sandwiched another kill by Ogoms to put USC up, 23-20, before a pair of cross-court shots by Fuller sealed the 25-21 win and a 3-0 sweep for the Trojans. USC had 15 kills (5e, 42att) and attacked at a .238 rate in the final set.
Notre Dame (5-2) and San Diego (3-2) face off in the fourth match of the weekend at noon PT. The evening match between USC and Notre Dame at 7 p.m. is a White Out match. The first 5,000 fans in attendance will receive a free "WE PLAY" t-shirt.