Sun Devil Volleyball Falls To No. 11 Texas In Straight Sets

Sept. 2, 2005

Box Score

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The Arizona State Sun Devil volleyball team lost in straight sets Friday evening to the 11th ranked University of Texas Longhorns in the first match of The Inn at Saint Mary's Shamrock Invitational hosted by the University of Notre Dame. Game scores were 30-24, 30-22, 30-25 in favor of the Longhorns.

The Sun Devils fell to 1-3 on the season and suffered their second loss to a ranked opponent. The Longhorns improved to 1-0 by improving to 27-5 all-time in season-openers. The Devils return to action Sunday at 2 p.m. (CST) against Notre Dame.

Sophomore middle blocker Staci Smith (Gresham, Ore.) led the Sun Devils with nine kills. She also had two service aces and two blocks to finish with a team-high 12.0 points. Junior outside hitter Nicole Morton (Fallbrook, Calif.) added eight kills and Mishawaka native Sarah Watkins chipped in four kills and two aces. Sophomore libero Sydney Donahue (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) led all players with 19 digs. Sophomore setter Rachel Mittelstaedt (Phoenix, Ariz.) came off the bench to lead ASU with 23 assists.

The Longhorns were led by three players with double-figures in kills. Freshman Lauren Paolini led all players with 12 kills, while Oregon transfer Dariam Acevedo (11 kills) and Leticia Armstrong (10) also had provided offense for UT. Michelle Moriarty and Kiley Hall each contributed 15 digs. Moriarty led all players with 41 assists.

In game one, ASU got off to a hot start building a 9-4 lead. After a UT timeout, the Longhorns went on a 6-0 run to take the lead at 10-9 and never looked back. The Devils climbed to within two points at 22-24, but Texas went on a 6-2 run to close out the 30-24 victory. Watkins, Smith and Morton each had four kills in the frame. UT out-hit the Sun Devils .485-.214, led by five kills each from Paolini and Armstrong.

Much like the first game, the Sun Devils kept it close in the beginning stages of game two before the Longhorns pulled away late. ASU pulled to within one point at 17-16, but UT closed out the 30-22 win with a 13-6 run. Morton and sophomore outside hitter Kristin Trayser (Crystal Lake, Ill.) each had three kills as the Sun Devils hit only .100 (11-7-40) in the frame. Paolini and Acevedo each had five kills for the `Horns.

Texas put the match away with a 30-25 victory in the third game. The Devils made a late run to pull to within four points at 22-26, but UT pulled again pulled away late going on 4-3 run to close out the match. Junior middle blocker Tierra Burnley (Santa Clarita, Calif.) and Morton each had four kills in the final frame.

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