No. 4 USC Bounces Back With Sweep At No. 2 California|
Oct. 29, 2011
BERKELEY, Calif. - Senior All-America outside hitter Alex Jupiter recorded 15 kills and a season-high 18 digs Saturday as the No. 4 USC Women of Troy earned a Pac-12 Conference sweep at the No. 2 California Golden Bears, 3-0 (25-15, 25-17, 25-22). USC finished the third set with a 16-5 run after trailing by a 17-9 score.
USC (18-4, 13-2) hit .319 on the evening as freshman Alexis Olgard made her first start of the season. Olgard finished with season highs in kills (eight) and blocks (five) while hitting .368 (8-1-19). Senior setter Kendall Bateman had 40 assists, 11 digs and four blocks while Katie Fuller and Sara Shaw had 10 kills apiece.
Shannon Hawari led Cal (21-4, 11-4) with 14 kills while hitting .435 for the Golden Bears. Senior outside hitter Tarah Murrey was limited to nine kills on a .185 hitting performance.
"The combination of us not making any errors and (California) unable to generate any offense early was the difference tonight," said USC head coach Mick Haley. "We were able to get on them early. We gave them a chance in the third set, but Alex came back and closed the gap on her serve. We really have to be good next week at home against Washington State and Washington. We need to be ready and stay in the hunt with UCLA for a conference title."
Shaw's serve produced five straight points in the first set as USC built a 12-5 lead with Bateman and Lauren Williams combining on a block on Christina Higgins to finish off the set win. It was more of the same in the second set as Jupiter's serve helped USC open with a 4-0 lead. Shaw's solo block on Ely Barrett made it 14-7 for the Trojans. Cal called a timeout, trailing by a 21-13 score before Olgard sent the Trojans into the intermission with the 2-0 lead in the match.
The Golden Bears broke a 6-6 tie in the third set on Correy Johnson's serve with six straight points. At 17-9, Williams' kill started the comeback for the Trojans. Fuller and Shaw went back-to-back to cut the deficit to four at 18-14 with Cal burning a timeout. Two kills by Fuller was part of a 5-1 run as USC tied it at 19-19 before Cal used its final timeout. Olgard came out with a kill after the break and a Cal attack error gave USC the needed cushion. Shaw and Jupiter closed out the match with kills.
USC hosts Washington State and Washington next weekend in Pac-12 Conference matches at the Galen Center with a 7 p.m. start for both matches.
Notes: With 17.5 points tonight, Alex Jupiter went over the 2,000-point mark in her career and continues to improve on her school record with a current total of 2,007.0 points...Jupiter's 18 digs in tonight's match was two off her career high...Alexis Olgard made her first start of the season after missing the first 13 matches of the season with a knee injury and a bout of mononucleosis...Kendall Bateman needs 31 assists to reach 4,000 career assists...Bateman is currently third on USC's all-time list for assists behind Janice Mounts (4,258) and Taylor Carico (4,101).
USC 25-25-25 CAL 15-17-22