Wildcats Take Down No. 13 Trojans

Sept. 25, 2009

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TUCSON, Ariz. - The No. 19 Arizona women's volleyball team set a trend during the non-conference schedule by getting out fast and taking the first set.  Playing its first conference match and first ranked team of the season, the Wildcats kept things rolling against No. 13 USC, topping the Trojans 3-1 in front of 2,411 at McKale Center.  Set scores were 25-21, 25-23, 22-25 and 25-21.


'I've always known we can compete with just about anybody,' said head coach Dave Rubio. 'I am proud of our performance and I think the next three or four weeks will certainly let us know where we are going to fall in the conference.'


The Wildcats (12-0, 1-0) and Trojans (11-2, 0-1) traded blows throughout set one with Paige Weber dishing out 13 dimes in route to a first set win for Arizona, 25-21.  The set saw the score tied 12 times and the lead change hands three times.


In set two, Courtney Karst led the way for Arizona as the sophomore tallied three kills and two blocks while Tiffany Owens recorded four kills and one ace.  Kendall Bateman chipped in with 15 assists for USC but they never could claim the lead after Arizona went up 14-13.  The Cats closed the set on a kill by Weber to make it 25-23.


With a 2-0, the Trojans would not go away without a fight.  Kimmee Roleder had one ace, three kills and a block for USC which won the set 25-22.


Over the fourth set, the Wildcats established a lead and never trailed although the Trojans attempted a number of potential comeback rallies.  Arizona, aided by an impressive set performance from Dana Hutchinson who had five kills, topped the 13th-ranked team 25-21 in the set and won the match 3-1.


'With every team we try to exploit the weaknesses, and that's what we did tonight,' said Jacy Norton. 'A lot of it is the defense they play is really susceptible to slides so we planned for that.'


Overall, Owens led the Cats with 16 kills and 13 digs.  Weber handed out 46 assists while Kaylen Bannister had five clutch blocks.  Also providing depth were Norton with 11 kills and Karst who had a total of 10 kills on .417 hitting.


For the match Arizona hit .255 to USC's .223.  The Trojans tallied more kills than the Cats (60-55), but committed seven more errors.


Tomorrow, Arizona will host No. 14 UCLA.  The Bruins, playing Arizona State in Tempe, were swept by the Sun Devils, 3-0

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