No. 4 Stanford Volleyball Takes Out USC, 3-1

Oct. 30, 2009

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STANFORD, Calif. -- The No. 4 Stanford women's volleyball team defeated No. 16 USC (21-25, 25-18, 25-13, 25-23), Friday at Maples Pavilion in front of a crowd of 2,706. The Cardinal improves to 15-5 overall and 8-2 in the Pac-10, while USC drops to 15-7 on the season and 4-6 in conference play.

Stanford was led by junior Alix Klineman who recorded 16 kills and six digs. Senior Janet Okogbaa posted 13 kills, hitting .455 and added seven blocks, while junior Cassidy Lichtman totaled 11 kills, seven assists and 14 digs, totaling her 14th double-double of the season. Freshman setter Karissa Cook controlled the offense with 38 assists and also contributed nine digs, two blocks and a kill. As a team, Stanford hit .293, while USC posted a .213 clip.

Freshman Hayley Spelman, earning her first start since Sept. 25, began the scoring for the Cardinal in the opening set. Stanford trailed 7-4, but a 6-0 run, which included two aces by junior libero Gabi Ailes, put the Cardinal ahead 10-7. A kill and a block by Okogbaa and Cook maintained the Stanford lead at 15-12. USC would use a 6-3 run to tie the score at 18, forcing head coach John Dunning to call timeout. A 4-1 streak by the Trojans would lead to a 25-21 first-set win for USC. The Trojans outhit the Cardianl .357 to .238 in the opening set behind sophomore outside hitter Alex Jupiter's 10 kills.

The teams appeared evenly matched to start the second set as the score was tied five times early on. A 6-2 run by Stanford, which included three kills and an ace by Klineman, gave the Cardinal a 12-8 advantage. Stanford increased its lead as Okogbaa drilled two more kills and Klineman registered a solo block for a 17-12 lead. A 4-2 run by USC would bring the Trojans within three, but kills by sophomore Stephanie Browne and Klineman would give Stanford a cushion. Errors by USC and Okogbaa's sixth kill of the match gave the Cardinal a 25-18 win in the second. Stanford hit .438 in the set, led by Klineman's six kills.

The Cardinal took an early 7-2 lead in the third set as Browne recorded three blocks for Stanford. Lichtman's eighth kill of the match and an ace by freshman Jessica Walker pushed the Cardinal lead to 16-8. Three consecutive kills by Okogbaa gave Stanford a 10-point lead, and the Cardinal easily won the third set, 25-13. Stanford held the Trojans to a .029 attack percentage in the third, while Okogbaa picked up five kills in the set for the Cardinal.

Stanford opened the fourth set with a 6-2 lead, but USC tied the score with a 4-0 run. Three straight points by the Cardinal, including two kills by Klineman, recaptured the lead for Stanford. More attack errors by USC and Ailes' third ace of the match pushed the Stanford lead to 13-9. The Trojans posted a 7-3 run to pull within one of the Cardinal, 17-16. Okogbaa and Klineman each recorded a kill to hold off the USC run. Up 21-17, Klineman recorded two straight kills and Stanford held off USC, 25-23 to capture the fourth set.

Stanford hosts the UCLA Bruins for a Halloween match, Saturday. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. from Maples Pavilion.

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