Third-Ranked Dawgs Hold Off Game Sun Devils
Oct. 2, 2009
SEATTLE - The No. 3 Husky women's volleyball squad returned home for the first time since August tonight, and celebrated with a 3-0 win over Arizona State in front of 2,504 fans at Bank of America Arena. Washington (13-0, 3-0 Pac-10) was given a run in the first and third sets against ASU (11-4, 1-2 Pac-10) but still managed the sweep, 25-23, 25-16, 25-22.
The Huskies still have yet to drop a set this year, and now boast a program-record 39-straight set wins, breaking the previous 36-set streak set in 2005. Still it was a battle tonight as it figures to be every night in the Pac-10. Junior Kindra Carlson led the offense with 13 kills and junior Jenna Hagglund had her first double-double of the year with 35 assists and 10 digs. Senior Tamari Miyashiro, the reigning Pac-10 Player of the Week, had a match-high 20 digs. Sophomore Bianca Rowland hit a blistering .600 with 10 kills and a career-high four aces.
'We found a way to win. We had a couple close games. I think they're a good team and they can put people on pressure defensively and they run a system like ours,' said head coach Jim McLaughlin. 'But we were flat, and I wonder if we're a little tired, but we can't let that happen against teams in the Pac-10 or we're going to get sent home kind of sad. We played pretty hard but we were flat emotionally, but we've got to get some rest and get ready to go tomorrow because (Arizona) will be a more physical team.'
After opening up a quick 5-1 first set lead, Washington saw Arizona State inch closer and eventually pull within one at 11-10. Washington then stepped things up and opened up a 15-11 lead that led the Sun Devils to take time. Senior Airial Salvo, Carlson, and senior Jill Collymore traded kills on three of four points during the run. Another Collymore kill sent Miyashiro back to serve and the Dawgs reeled off three-straight points to prompt another Devil discussion at their bench. Washington had an eight point cushion at 20-12, but would have to work hard for the final five. ASU took five-straight to pull within 22-21. Rowland broke the run with a vicious finish, and then followed with an ace to bring up set point. Again ASU held on, saving two set points to get to 24-23, but a booming Carlson shot up the line careened off the block and out and UW moved on with the set in hand.
Arizona State held a brief 3-1 lead to open set two, but back-to-back Carlson kills evened things early. At 5-5, Salvo put one down and Collymore rifled a serve that ASU couldn't pick up. A Rowland kill followed and the Dawgs were up 8-5. ASU got no closer than two the rest of the way. Leading 13-11, Carlson chalked up a kill and Miyashiro clipped the tape with a serve that dropped over for an ace and the Devils took time. Out of the break came another Carlson kill, and two ASU errors for an 18-11 lead. Another four-point run took UW to set point. Rowland had back-to-back aces and Hagglund and Lauren Barfield combined for a block. That recipe would work again on set point, as the two rejected another ASU attack and the Huskies won, 25-16.
The Huskies ran much smoother in set two, hitting .303 compared to just .111 for the Sun Devils. Washington owned the net with five blocks to just one for ASU, and UW dialed up five aces as well. Carlson's six kills on 13 errorless swings led the way.
Set three found the Huskies in danger of venturing into a fourth-set for the first time all year, but with some help from the fans and a fiery Becky Perry checking into the lineup, Washington fought its way back. Washington first erased a 12-9 deficit with a Carlson kill, an ASU error, and a block by Barfield and Carlson. But the Sun Devils rallied right back and claimed the next four points for a 16-12 lead, resulting in a Husky timeout. Down 17-13, junior Becky Perry stepped onto the court for the first time since an ankle injury sidelined her for the Oregon road trip. Perry got her first kill right away, and the Dawgs inched closer. A perfectly placed Carlson ball fell to the floor and brought UW within one at 21-20, and Perry then used the block for another kill to tie the set. ASU called time and got the next point out of the break, but it would be its last. Perry soared in for two more kills off Hagglund assists to put UW up 23-22 and the Sun Devils called yet another timeout. But it was no use, as Perry dropped another bomb to set up match point, and then combined with Rowland for a block to send the fans home happy.
In just half of one set, Perry had five kills on seven swings with no errors for a .714 percentage. The Huskies wound up at .250 for the set to .167 for Arizona State.
'Becky came in and had three good swings, three critical swings. At the end of the game we served well and got them in trouble,' said McLaughlin.
Washington will rest up and await the arrival of the 18th-ranked Arizona Wildcats who will be looking to rebound after a sweep at Washington State this evening. The Huskies and Cats will meet at 7 p.m. Saturday night.