Volleyball Uses Late Rallies To Take Down Tulane In Four Games

Sept. 12, 2004

TEMPE, Ariz. (www.TheSunDevils.com) -- Junior outside hitter Sarah Watkins and sophomore Nicole Morton each recorded 14 kills to lead the Arizona State Sun Devils to a 3-1 come-from-behind victory over the Tulane Green Wave Sunday afternoon in the final day of the Wyndham Buttes/Sun Devil Volleyball Classic at Wells Fargo Arena.

Tulane won the first game, 30-21, but the Devils overcame a pair of late deficits to take the next three frames to win the match 21-30, 31-29, 30-28, 30-24. The win improves ASU to 4-2 overall and 2-1 in the tournament. Tulane drops to 6-2 overall and 1-2 in the three-day event.

Watkins (Mishawaka, Ind.) and Morton (Bonsall, Calif.) were part of a strong offensive performance that saw four players reach double-digits in kills. Morton recorded her third double-double of the season with 14 kills and 13 digs. Watkins led or tied for the team lead in kills in ASU's three tournament matches and also contributed three service aces and eight digs in the victory over the Green Wave.

Freshman middle blocker Colette Meek (Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada) had 13 kills on a .400 attack percentage (13-1-30) and added three blocks and two service aces. Sophomore Nina Reeves (Gilbert, Ariz.) sparked the Devils down the stretch with 10 kills (.500) and two aces.

Freshman setter Rachel Mittelstaedt (Phoenix, Ariz.) made her mark all over the court, recording career highs with 59 assists and five blocks. She also recorded three kills and five digs. Freshman libero Sydney Donahue (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) anchored the defense with a match-high 23 digs and also had one service ace. Mittelstaedt and Donahue were both named to the all-tournament team.

The Sun Devils dropped the first game, 30-21, and trailed 29-25 late in the second frame before mounting an unbelievable comeback. Donahue served six consecutive points to tie the game at 1-1. ASU also trailed in the third game, 28-26, but a Tulane service error and a key block from Mittelstaedt and Staci Smith (Gresham, Ore.) gave the Devils the 2-1 advantage heading into the fourth game.

Smith proved to be one of the deciding factors in the match, giving the Devils a solid block at the net. The freshman middle blocker recorded career highs with nine kills and six blocks. She did not record an attack error on 15 swings.

Tulane outside hitter Lindsey Norman, a product of Glendale's Apollo High School, recorded a career-high 18 kills and had nine digs. Middle blocker Deva Fowler was named to the all-tournament team after recording 19 kills and six blocks (22.0 points).

Arizona State returns to action next weekend with a pair of matches in Long Beach, Calif. The Devils take on nationally ranked Long Beach State on Friday at the Long Beach Arena (7:30 p.m.) and Cal State Fullerton on Saturday at The Pyramid (5 p.m.). ASU will not play at home until Oct. 1-2 when they host defending national champion USC (Oct. 1, 7 p.m.) and UCLA (Oct. 2, 7 p.m.).

Tournament results--------------------Pacific 3, Tulane 0 (Sep 10, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)ASU 3, Fordham 0 (Sep 10, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)Tulane 3, Fordham 1 (Sep 11, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)Pacific 3, ASU 0 (Sep 11, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)Pacific 3, Fordham 1 (Sep 12, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)ASU 3, Tulane 1 (Sep 12, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)

GamesInstitution W-L For Opp Pct----------- --- --- --- ---Pacific............. 3-0 9 1 1.000ASU................. 2-1 6 4 0.667Tulane.............. 1-2 4 7 0.333Fordham............. 0-3 2 9 0.000

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