Volleyball Beats Radford in Four Games

Sept. 7, 2001

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Gina Schmidt and Michele Solomon combined for 40 kills to lift the Oregon State volleyball team to a 3-1 victory over Radford in the Fiesta Bowl Tournament on Friday night. Game scores were 30-22, 30-22, 27-30 and 30-18.

Schmidt had her second consecutive 20-kill match, this time hitting .528 with 22 kills, while Solomon hit .441 with a season-high 18 kills - just one shy of tying her career-high.

After starting the match off with a 5-0 deficit in game one, the Beavers (5-1) slowly made their way back into the game. With the score at 11-8 in favor of the Highlanders (0-5), Schmidt rattled off four straight kills to give the Beavers their first lead of the match. OSU never lost the advantage, although Radford hung close and didn't trail by more than three points until the Beavers broke open a 21-19 lead with a four-point rally.

It was almost the same story in game two. With the exception of Radford's four-point lead at 11-7, neither team led by more than three points until the Beavers got a block from Schmidt and Solomon to make it 24-20.

'One of the real positives of this match was that when the score was tight late in the game, we didn't let them score and we went on runs,' Somera said. 'That shows that this team is getting a little competitive fortitude and can step it up when needed.'

Radford was ahead for almost all of game three, leading by as many as nine points (18-11). The Highlanders struggled to put the game away though. Radford got a kill for its 29th point (29-24), but the Beavers scored three straight points before Sarah Gates slammed down the game-winning kill.

'Game three was a perfect example of the new scoring can help a team get back into a match,' Somera said. 'It just goes to show how detrimental hitting errors can be. We had three more hitting errors than they did in that game, and they won by three points.'

The Beavers led the whole way in game four, building up a nine-point lead to force Radford to call timeout with OSU up 20-11. The Highlanders scored on a kill on the next play, but OSU scored three points and regained the momentum with a kill from Solomon and two Radford hitting errors.

OSU hit .337 on the night, with Schmidt, Solomon and Katrina Nelson (.545, eight kills) all hitting better than .400 on the night. OSU won nearly every statistical battle, outdigging (71-62), outblocking (5-4) and outhitting (75-60 kills) the Highlanders. Radford did serve six aces to OSU's four.

Schmidt also had 10 digs to pick up her sixth double-double of the year, while Joscelyn Hannaford picked up her second with 10 kills and 10 digs for the Beavers, while three other OSU players added double-digit digs. Jessica Papell and Nikki Neuburger tied for the team lead with 13 apiece, while Laura Collins also notched a double-double with 11 digs to go along with 56 assists.

Radford was led by Laura Marcuson, who hit .351 with 16 kills and 17 digs. Katie Sherwood also had a double-double, finishing with 16 kills and 10 digs.

The Beavers remain undefeated in the Fiesta Bowl Tournament. They will conclude the weekend with a 1 p.m. match against host Northern Arizona on Saturday. If NAU defeats UC Irvine on Friday night, the match between OSU and the Lumberjacks will be for the tournament title.

'I'm excited for the opportunity. This puts us in a good position to win a preseason tournament, which was one of our goals,' Somera said.

Match Results

Oregon State (5-1) 	30  30  27  30Radford (0-5)	    	22  22  30  18
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