No. 15 USC Keeps Rolling With 3-0 Sweep Over No. 20 UC Irvine
Sept. 8, 2009
LOS ANGELES -- Senior All-America outside hitter Jessica Gysin (Los Gatos/St. Francis HS) had a team-high 12 kills Tuesday as the No. 15 USC Women of Troy swept the No. 20 UC Irvine Anteaters, 3-0 (25-16, 25-19, 25-20), in a non-conference match at the Galen Center. Gysin posted her first double-double of the season with 10 digs while adding four blocks, three assists, one service ace and hit .550 (12-1-20) in the match.
USC (6-1) registered its sixth straight 3-0 sweep and handed UC Irvine (6-1) its first loss of the season.
Lauren Williams and Zoe Garrett provided good production in the middle for the Trojans. Garrett had seven kills with no errors for a .438 match (7-0-16) while Williams had six kills and hit .625 (6-1-8). Sophomore Kendall Bateman provided 38 assists in the win with six digs. Sophomore outside hitter Alex Jupiter continued her streak of double figure kills in every match this season with 10 against the Anteaters.
The Women of Troy hit .312 in the match and held the Anteaters to a .112 clip. USC was able to keep UCI leading kill producer Kari Pestolesi, who entered the match with a 4.12 kps average, to six kills with five errors for a .037 evening. Juliane Piggott mirrored Pestolesi's production with six kills and five errors.
Down 12-11 in the first set, Bateman's serve paced four straight for the Trojans for the 15-12 advantage. Kills by Kimmee Rolder and Garrett made it a five-point lead at 19-14. Geena Urango later came in for USC and used her jump serve to add three more points as USC took the first set.
Riley Cropper kept the Women of Troy off balance in the second set as UCI built an early 5-0 lead. USC answered with a 9-4 run to tie it at 9-9 on Gysin's kill. Jupiter's serve sparked four straight points, including an ace, as USC pulled away, 18-14. Garrett gave USC the 2-0 lead in the match from the middle on the kill.
'I thought we fought back and got back in it,' said Haley. 'It was a great comeback to outscore them 25-14 after that start. I thought we just took over, but that's very dangerous against teams in the conference. I didn't think we were focused in the third set so we will work hard to correct that.'
Both teams worked to a 10-10 tie, but Gysin's ace put the Trojans ahead for good. Audrey Eichler put the match away with her third kill of the evening for the USC victory.
USC travels to Orem, Utah, for three matches this weekend. The Women of Troy face Idaho State on Friday (Sept. 11) at 1 p.m. before two straight matches against host Utah Valley. The first match with Utah Valley will be at 7 p.m. and the next one played on Saturday (Sept. 12) at 1 p.m.
Notes: Tonight was the first meeting between Mick Haley and UC Irvine head coach Paula Weishoff...Weishoff was an All-American middle blocker at USC and a member of the 1980 AIAW national championship team...Weishoff served as assistant coach at USC from 1997-2003, which included two NCAA national titles in 2002 and 2003...USC has never lost to UC Irvine and is now 10-0 all-time in the series...USC is now 41-3 at the Galen Center...with 12 digs tonight, senior libero Alli Hillgren is nine digs away from breaking into USC's all-time list for career digs.
Records: USC (6-1), UC Irvine (6-1)
Kills: Jessica Gysin 12 (USC), Kari Pestolesi/Julianne Piggott 6 (UCI)
Team: UCI USC
1 .025 .364
2 .188 .300
3 .143 .278
Match .112 .312
USC head coach Mick Haley post-match quotes
Thoughts on the match
'Honestly, we just focused on the serving and passing game. We just wanted to serve as well as we could and really handle their tough serves. We didn't have a great game plan because we felt if we did what we wanted to do and got comfortable with the ball that would be enough for us to be successful. In these four weeks of preseason, I really don't want to spend too much on the opponents. I prefer to spend more time on getting ourselves straightened out and what we need to do in each situation. The first set was great because it was so intense and I just let them go to see how they could handle it and our players really didn't show any cracks in the armor. I thought that was a real step up from the past. I think we are going to have a pretty good team. We are pretty disciplined. We can get a lot better and need more offense. I thought Kendall ran another great offense tonight and Jessica was exceptionally good. It makes her real effective.'
On playing three matches in 24 hours this weekend in high altitude
'It's definitely a mental challenge. I think playing all of these matches in 24 hours will actually help us in the altitude. We might have some trouble on Saturday afternoon and similarly since we are playing the same team twice. I really want to play some different players this weekend in different situations and if we can do that and still be successful, I will be pretty happy.'
On coaching against Paula Weishoff for the first time
'She knows what we are trying to do and she knows the system. She makes you take care of business. She was ready to beat us if we came out tonight and slopped around. You can't let those teams get after you or you will be in trouble. Paula did some nice things with her team. They changed up on us a little and I thought we handled it pretty well.'