Volleyball Sweeps No. 24 Colorado State

Aug. 29, 2009


Fort Collins, Colo. – The Oregon State volleyball team hit a combined .308 with junior Jill Sawatzky (St. Andrews, Manitoba) hitting .370 with 14 kills as the Beavers swept the No. 24 Colorado State Rams in front of a crowd of 2,106 on Saturday evening. Set scores were 25-21, 25-23, 25-19.


“It’s obviously another step forward for our program beating a ranked team,” Liskevych said. “The one thing we did really well was our outside hitting, particularly Bree. We knew Colorado State was going to come out determined to have a good match. We never let them get in control of the match, which is what’s important. The freshmen did a great job coming in. Alyssa did a great job in the back row the whole time, and it was a good start for them.”


The Beavers outhit the Rams 52-39, led by senior Rachel Rourke’s (Queensland, Australia) with 16. Senior Bree Knitter (Fallbrook, Calif.) added eight. Oregon State racked up 19 kills in both the first and third sets, 14 in the second set.


Rourke started off the match firing, quickly racking up four kills before the 10th rally. The Beavers led by as many as four at 8-4 before Colorado State took a small lead at the halfway point. But behind the serving of sophomore libero Betsy Devich (Kirkland, Wash.), Oregon State rallied back to take the lead. Rourke put the set away with a kill that Evan Sanders couldn’t handle, sending it sailing deep behind the court.


Oregon State continued the intensity into the second set, limiting the Rams to mainly sideout points, building a lead to as many as four. But Colorado State battled back to reach 20 first. The Rams held a 23-21 lead, but a big kill by Knitter followed by a Knitter and junior Kiersten Sambrailo (Watsonville, Calif.) block tied everything at 23, causing Colorado State to burn its final timeout. Behind the serving of Devich, Colorado State committed two unforced errors to close the set in favor of Oregon State, 2-0.


Coming out of the break, Oregon State started off strong, earning the first point on a block by Rourke and Rathgeber. And playing in the backcourt for the Beavers for Knitter, freshman Alyssa O’Neil (West Linn, Ore.) tallied her first ace of the season to give Oregon State a three-point advantage at 6-3. Sawatzky became hot, earning five straight kills for the team to give the Beavers a seven-point lead at 12-5.


Oregon State continued to hold its lead as a couple of freshmen earned firsts. Dianni Freeman (Tigard, Ore.) entered the set to serve for Rourke, and Megan McBride (Auburn, Wash.) recorded a dig and kill on her first rally in the match, adding a pair of assists.


Devich dug a match-high 16 balls, while Sambrailo led the front court defense with six blocks. Sawatzky and senior Camilla Ah-Hoy (Laie, Hawai’i) nearly had double-doubles with nine digs each


Colorado State’s Jacque Davisson and Danielle Minch both paced the Rams offense with 11 kills each. Libero Katelin Batten had 12 digs.


The Beavers wrap up Asics/Coors Classic play against Pepperdine on Sunday morning at 10:30 a.m. PT.


Oregon State Notes – Oregon State is now 3-3 all-time against Colorado State, winning two of the last three.


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