No. 18 Eastern Washington Defeats OSU In Five To Remain Undefeated

Oct. 5, 2002

CORVALLIS, Ore. - Oregon State gave undefeated Eastern Washington a scare, but the No. 18 Eagles remained perfect on the season after coming back from a 2-0 deficit to defeat the Beaver volleyball team in five games at Gill Coliseum on Saturday night. The Eagles improved to 17-0 after the 30-32, 26-30, 30-27, 32-30, 15-10 win over the Beavers, who dropped to 6-8.

The Beavers appeared ready to avenge last year's first-round NCAA tournament loss and hand the Eagles their first loss of the year after winning the first two games. However, EWU, who had lost just four games heading into the match with OSU, came back strong in the final three games and capitalized on OSU's serving and passing problems late in the match. The Beavers gave EWU five points off service and receiving errors in game four, which ended up being decided by just two points. OSU also had three receiving errors in game five, including one on the final play of the match.

'We lost this match because we didn't serve and pass well in pressure situations. We had way too many errors in game four, and game five was a total passing breakdown,' coach Nancy Somera said. 'We played our tails off and did everything else right. Our defense was outstanding. This group just needs to bear down and get tougher when it matters.'

OSU's defense turned in a season-high 103 digs, with five Beavers coming away with double-figures. Nikki Neuburger had a career-high 33 digs, good for the fourth best total in school history. Megan McMillan had 17, and Laura Collins added a season-high 16. Lianne Dela Cruz and K.C. Frederic each chipped in 10 digs. EWU finished with 96, highlighted by Andrea Verdoljak's 24 and Kristy Chester's 23.

Allison Lawrence led the Beaver offense for the third match in a row, this time posting a match-high 22 kills for her second 20-plus effort in the last three matches. Michele Solomon hit .448 with 14 kills, and Karah Rhoades had a career-high 14 kills for the night. McMillan rounded out the Beavers in double-figures with 16 kills. Lindsay Page had a team-best 21 kills for the Eagles.

Match ResultsNo. 18 Eastern Washington (17-0)  30  26  30  32  15Oregon State (6-8)		  32  30  27  30  10
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