Escobar's Double-Double Helps Lift 2002 Volleyball To 3-1 Win Over Alumni
Aug. 30, 2002
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Playing a group of alumni that consisted three of the top outside hitters in school history and a host of other recent standouts, the 2002 Arizona State volleyball team defeated the Alumni 3-1 Friday night in the annual Alumni Match at Wells Fargo Arena. Game scores in the match were 31-29, 30-11, 26-30, 30-26.
Newcomer Juliana Escobar (Sobradinho DF, Brazil), who was the 2001 AVCA Junior College Player of the Year at Barton County CC, led all players with 20 kills. The left-handed swinging Escobar also added 11 digs and hit .349 for the match. Her 23.0 points (kills + service aces + solo blocks + 1/2 block assists) also led all players. Junior outside hitter Kim Mehlhorn (Tempe) registered 11 kills, while redshirt sophomore Natalie Harris (Tempe) looked impressive coming off shoulder surgery by adding 10 kills and six digs. Junior libero Courtney Blocher (Scottsdale) led all players with 17 digs.
'We were very tentative and didn't play as well as I hoped,' said head coach Patti Snyder-Park, who enters her 14th and final season at the helm of the Sun Devils. 'I thought Juliana (Escobar) played very well and our liberos were all over the place, but, other areas of our game were not so good. We need to pass and set better if we are going to have success this year.'
The Alumni squad was led by current assistant coaches Christine Garner (1992-95) and Terri Cox (1994-97). Garner, who was an AVCA All-American in 1995 and remains the ASU career record holder with 1,871 kills, contributed 19 kills and 12 digs. Cox, an all-Pac-10 selection in 1996, had 10 kills and nine digs. Former outside hitter Amanda Burbridge (1997-2000), who played professionally in Puerto Rico last year and will enter the USPV draft this fall, also had a nice match, finishing with 15 kills and 10 digs. Burbridge ranks third in all-time kills with 1,597 and is the school record holder with kills in a season (599) and kills in a match (39).
The Sun Devils officially start the 2002 season next weekend at the South Carolina Volleyball Classic in Columbia, S.C. ASU will face SEC power South Carolina in the opening match Sept. 6 at 7 p.m. The Devils will then play nationally ranked Pacific (#11) Saturday at 12:30 p.m. and Creighton that evening at 5 p.m. ASU is coming off a 10-16 record in 2001 and return all but two players for last years squad.