Volleyball Lets Crucial Match Slip Away With 3-2 Loss At No. 21 UCLA
Nov. 21, 2002
WESTWOOD, Calif. (www.TheSunDevils.com) -- Despite a career night from sophomore outside hitter Natalie Harris, the Arizona State Sun Devil Volleyball team could not hold onto a 13-10 lead late in the decisive game five to drop a 3-2 match to the 21st-ranked UCLA Bruins Thursday night at Pauley Pavilion. Game scores were 30-26, 22-30, 22-30, 30-23, 13-15 in favor of the Bruins.
The loss snapped a brief two-match win streak for the Sun Devils and dropped ASU to 12-10 overall and 8-9 in Pac-10 play. A victory would have ensured ASU at least a .500 finish in conference play with only tomorrow night's match with No. 1 ranked USC remaining on the 2002 Pac-10 slate. Defeating the Sun Devils for the seventh straight time in Pauley Pavilion, UCLA improved to 16-12 overall and forged ahead of ASU in the Pac-10 standings at 9-8 in league action. The loss also marked the first time ASU has dropped a five-game match this year, previously being unbeaten in six prior matches.
Harris, a redshirt sophomore who has been rotated in and out as ASU's second starting outside hitter, had a career night by recording career highs in kills (22), digs (17), blocks (5) and points (25.5). Junior outside hitter Juliana Escobar (Brasilia, Brasil) battled through recent knee soreness to record her 15th double-double of the year with 15 kills and 21 digs. Junior setter Cheryl Anglin paced the ASU offense with 45 assists for her 40th career match with 40 or more assists.
UCLA was led by the 17 kills from freshman outside hitter Brittany Ringel, two of which came late in the fifth game as the Bruins rallied after being down 13-10. Senior Lauren Fendrick also had 16 kills and middle blocker Cira Wright had a match-high 11 block assists.
Arizona State concludes its 2002 Pac-10 season Friday night with a 7 p.m. match at No. 1 USC. The Sun Devils will then travel to Las Vegas to compete in the UNLV Thanksgiving Classic with UNLV, Oral Roberts and Weber State.