Sun Devils Burn No. 6 Trojans in Three-Set Upset
Nov. 2, 2012
TEMPE, Ariz. - In a tightly contested match, the sixth-ranked USC women's volleyball team (21-4, 9-4 Pac-12) came up on the short end as Arizona State (16-10, 5-8) stunned the Women of Troy in a 3-0 upset sweep (25-21, 26-24, 25-23) at Wells Fargo Arena on Friday, Nov. 4. The Sun Devil win snapped a five-match USC winning streak that dated back to Oct. 12 and is just the second ASU win in the last 34 USC-ASU matchups.
Much like the first meeting between these two squads, the defenses showed up to play and made things tough for both offenses. The Trojans recorded a .178 hitting percentage (41k, 18e) on 129 swings while the Sun Devils posted a .168 rate (45k, 22e) on 137 attempts. USC out-dug the Sun Devils, 61-59, but were beat in the serving game as the Devils earned three service aces and the Trojans had eight service errors.
Freshman outside hitter Samantha Bricio led all players with 14 kills (5e, 45att, .200) while junior libero Natalie Hagglund had match-high honors on 23 digs. The Trojans also got eight kills from junior outside Sara Shaw. Junior middle Alexis Olgard hit .250 with five kills and got in on four blocks while freshman middle Alicia Ogoms knocked down four kills and led the team with five blocks.
For the Sun Devils, freshman outside Macey Gardner led the way with 13 kills (7e, 48att, .125) with seven digs. Libero Stephanie Preach had 19 digs while outside hitter Nora Tuioti-Mariner came on strong at the end of the match to finish with eight kills (3e, 26att, .192). Setter Allison Palmer topped all players with 37 assists and added 13 digs.
The Trojans led, 7-4, in the first set off a service ace from Bricio, and went ahead by as many as six points at 17-11 on a pair of kills by senior middle blocker Natasa Siljkovic. The Sun Devils cut into the USC lead but the Trojans were still up, 20-17, when senior opposite hitter Katie Fuller crushed a shot from the left side, but that was when ASU turned it on. The Devils tied the score at 20-all when an attack by Fuller went long. Alexis Pinson knocked down a kill on an overpassed ball to give the Devils the only lead they'd need in the set; the last one. The last Trojan point came when Bricio earned a kill off the Sun Devil block, but USC errors against the ASU defense ended the set, 25-21, for the Devils.
After trailing by as many as nine points in the second set, 21-12, the Trojans pulled to within seven on a cross-court kill by Bricio. ASU committed several errors before Bricio tooled the block to get USC within seven once more at 22-15. The Trojans chipped away at the lead until another cross-court kill by Bricio pulled USC into a two-point deficit at 22-20. A few rallies later, Bricio flew out of the back row to earn a kill and tie the set at 23-all. ASU went up one point, but a quick kill by Ogoms knotted the score at 24-all before Gardner gave ASU its last lead at 25-24. After a controversial stoppage in play and a replayed point, the Devils earned the 2-0 lead on a cut-shot by senior outside hitter Erica Wilson for a 26-24 win.
The Sun Devils seized control of the third set and claimed three-point lead when Whitney Follette knocked down a kill off another overpassed USC ball. The Trojans fought back to tie the set at 10-all when Ogoms and sophomore setter/opposite Emily Young teamed up to block Wilson, but ASU continued to lead until Young tied the set for the fifth time at 14-all with a kill from the right side. Olgard crushed a quick set to the ground for a 15-14 lead and the Trojans kept the Devils at bay for the next 10 rallies, but ASU had other plans in mind as a Gardner kill put the Sun Devils on top, 23-22. Tuioti-Mariner went off the block for a kill to give ASU a pair of set points to work with but Bricio saved one by earning a kill out of the back row. The Devils rallied for the final point until Tuioti-Mariner put another one down to complete the ASU sweep.
With a day's rest in between matches, the Trojans are back in action with a noon MT (11 a.m. PT) match against Arizona (12-11, 4-8 Pac-12) at the McKale Center in Tucson, Ariz., on Sunday, Nov. 4. That match will be carried live on the Pac-12 Networks with Anne Marie Anderson and Mike Dodd on the call. Please visit www.USCTrojans.com for more information and complete stats.