No. 1 Trojans Sweep Eagles to Complete USD Tourney
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Sept. 14, 2013
SAN DIEGO - The No. 1-ranked USC women's volleyball team improved to 8-1 with a 3-0 sweep (25-12, 25-23, 25-21) of Eastern Washington (3-8) in the final match of the 2013 USD Tournament at Jenny Craig Pavilion on Saturday, Sept. 14. The Women of Troy out-hit their opponent for the ninth time in nine matches and received 14 kills (5e, 27att, .333) from freshman outside hitter Elise Ruddins and 12 kills (2e, 29att, .345) from sophomore outside Samantha Bricio in the win.
Ruddins led the Trojans in scoring for the second straight match and was named to the all-tournament team along with senior libero Natalie Hagglund. Hagglund had 14 digs in the match to lead all players. Senior outside hitter Sara Shaw collected eight kills (4e, 20att, .200) and had nine digs.
Allie Schumacher led the Eagle attack with 11 kills (2e, 30att, .300) and had eight digs. Melissa Waelter had nine kills (7e, 35att, .057) and six digs for Eastern Washington.
The Trojans never trailed in the first set and were rarely challenged as they built a 10-3 lead on back-to-back kills by Shaw followed by back-to-back kills from Ruddins. Bricio took a set from freshman setter Alice Pizzasegola and put the ball to the ground to give USC an 18-5 lead. She later did the same with a set from junior setter Hayley Crone to push the Trojans into a 23-9 lead. Ruddins' kill earned set point before the Eagles flew too low to avoid their own errors to close out a 25-12 loss. The Trojans had 20 kills (5e, 39att) and hit .385 in the first set thanks to six from Ruddins and four from sophomore outside hitter Kiara Wright. USC had two blocks and dug up 21 balls to hold the EWU attack to a .059 hitting percentage (6k, 4e, 34att).
The Eagles took flight and stretched out to a 10-8 lead in the second set on a kill by Milica Nisavic, but the Trojans wrestled away the lead and went ahead by two, 17-15, on a kill from Bricio. USC fought to stay ahead, but EWU knotted the score for the ninth time on a Trojan error at 22-all. Ruddins earned set point on her kill before senior middle blocker Alexis Olgard one-timed a quick set from Pizzasegola to secure the 25-23 win for USC. The Trojans had 16 kills (3e, 32att) to log a .406 hitting percentage in the second set and lay waste to the Eagles' .237 hitting rate (15k, 6e, 38att).
EWU traded blows with the Trojans in the third set and held a 17-16 lead on a kill from Schumacher but USC knotted the score at 17-all on a Bricio kill. Eagle errors did them in as Bricio crushed a crosscourt shot for a kill and a three-point Trojan lead at 21-18. Back-to-back kills by Ruddins gave USC a 23-20 lead before a kill by Shaw secured set point for the Trojans. Ruddins swooped in to earn her third of the Trojans' final four points and sealed a 25-21 win and the USC sweep. The Eagles had 13 kills (6e, 37att) for a .189 hitting percentage while the Trojans finished with a .222 rate (14k, 6e, 36att).
USC completed its pre-conference tournament schedule and will play its first home match as host to UC Irvine (7-3) on Wednesday, Sept. 18, at the Galen Center. The Trojans' home opener will be carried live by ESPNU to a national audience at 7 p.m. PT. Please visit USCTrojans.com for more information.