Cougar Volleyball Battles No. 5 Washington But Falls in Three

Oct. 13, 2006

SEATTLE, Wash. - The Washington State volleyball team gave the No. 5-ranked and defending national champions Washington a royal battle before falling to the Huskies 32-30, 30-28, 34-32, in a match played before a live television audience in the Northwest and a school-record 6,216 fans at the Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion for the double-header volleyball match and basketball opening practice event.

Washington captured its 25th consecutive home court win and advanced to a record of 15-3 overall, 5-2 in Pac-10 play. WSU's record is now 13-8 overall, 1-6 in conference play.

Cougars Kelly Rosin and Adetokunbo Faleti each had 14 kills and Brittany Johnson had 13 kills to lead WSU. Corina Beyer, WSU's freshman setter had 44 assists. Freshman libero Kelly Hyder had a match-high 23 digs and Tara West had a match-high six blocks.

UW All-American Christal Morrison had a match-high 18 kills while the Huskies' All-American setter, Courtney Thompson, had 55 assists. Jessica Swarbrick added five blocks and two aces.

The first game was marked with several long rallies of play. The Cougars took an 18-14 lead before the Huskies tied the game at 19 points. UW went ahead 28-23 but kills from WSU's Brittany Johnson and Kelly Rosin and a Cassie Robbins and Johnson block cut the Dawgs' lead to one, 28-27. UW's Stevie Mussie landed a kill to put the Huskies at game-point, 29-27 but on the next serve, Mussie served into the net and WSU's Faleti smashed a kill to tie the game at 29. A rare Stephanie Weishaar service error put UW at game point again but Rosin countered with a kill to knot the game again at 30. Morrison put the win in the UW side of the scoreboard by landing the final two attacks of the game. Huskies, hitting .255, take the 32-30 win over WSU, which hit .312.

WSU led in the second game until an ace from Morrison gave the Huskies their first lead at 23-22. The teams battled back and forth, with the Cougars tying the game at 27 on a kill from West. A pair of WSU attack errors put UW at game point, 29-27. Faleti's kill kept the Dawgs at bay on the next play before Morrison landed the final point and UW took a 30-28 win. This game found UW with a hitting percentage of .143 while WSU hit .148.

Game three was another tight game and the Cougars tied it up at 28-all when Morrison landed a kill to put the Huskies at game point. Rosin countered to knot the game at 29 points. UW's Janine Sandell ended a long rally with a kill but Morrison, serving for game point, served into the net to tie the game at 30-all. Jill Collymore and Johnson traded kills for the 31-point tie. Collymore's next attack hit the floor on WSU's side but the Cougs stayed in contention when a tip by Collymore went out of bounds. Alesha Deesing's kill put the Dawgs up and serving for match point for the fifth time in the game. Rosin's attack was off-balance and the Huskies captured the 34-32 win and the 3-0 win.

'We played great tonight and all of three of our outside hitters did an outstanding job of executing a game plan and scoring to the areas of the court that we had scouted,' Cougar Head Coach Brian Heffernan said. 'I think this is the best we have played as a team. We were really composed and we had our opportunities. Now we have to take this and learn from it and be prepared for Arizona and Arizona State.

Washington State travels to Arizona for a pair of matches next Thursday, at Arizona and next Friday at Arizona State.

No. 5 Washington (15-3, 5-2) def. Washington State (13-8, 1-6) 32-30, 30-28, 34-32KILLS - WSU 54 (Rosin 14, Faleti 14), UW 65 (Morrison 18)HITTING PERCENTAGE - WSU .240, UW .240ASSISTS - WSU 51 (Beyer 44), UW 61 (Thompson 55)DIGS - WSU 58 (Hyder 23), UW 66 (Miyashiro 17)BLOCKS - WSU 12 (West 6), UW 10 (Swarbrick 5)SERVICE ACES - WSU 3 (West 1, Beyer 1, Hyder 1), UW 5 (Swarbrick 2)Attendance:  6,216.
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