Buffs Fall To #15 Oregon
BOULDER - No. 15 Oregon hit .385 to defeat the University of Colorado volleyball team 25-13, 25-13, 25-14 on Friday night at the Coors Events Center.
The Ducks (10-1, 3-0 Pac-12) had 46 kills in the match while the Buffs (5-7, 0-4 Pac-12) had 25 kills and hit .102 for the match. This was the third straight ranked opponent the Buffs have faced in eight days as they played No. 1 California and No. 2 Stanford last Friday and Saturday.
Kerra Schroeder led Colorado with 10 kills and hit .222 in the effort. Schroeder also added a block solo and pair of block assists for 12.0 points. Emily Alexis had six kills for CU, while Anicia Santos and Nikki Lindow each recorded three.
Megan Beckwith picked up a match-best 13 digs in the effort and Schroeder added seven. CU recorded 30 digs to average 10.00 per set.
"We can be very realistic and there is absolutely no excuse acceptable in our locker room, which is a good thing." coach Liz Kritza said. "Regardless of who you are playing, this team, the players and coaches, will not accept anything less than high-level performance and response and intense training; and that's good because it's permeating everything in this program we need to build it to the level we need it to be. We can't sit back and take moral victories. We can look at the highlights and look at the things we did well and use it as a teaching tool. We will not accept anything less than proper level of playing, and to me that's a good thing."
The Buffs were without the services of Alyssa Valentine who suffered an injury in practice on Thursday, so Michelle Miller and Erin Stock shared the setting duties for CU. Stock recorded 14 assists and Miller added seven.
"Anytime we are changing line-ups there is an adjustment period, unfortunately for us it's hard for us to play a top-20 team during that adjustment period. Kerra [Schroeder] said, 'Credit to the two setters that jumped in,' but there is no excuse for us, players and coaches expect a higher level of performance than what we put out tonight. We will have that for tomorrow. The longer a team plays together, the more comfortable they are, and with young players it directly reflects on their individual performances. The more comfortable, the more confident they are in their own positions. I expect it to get better with more time."
Oregon used a 4-0 run early in the first set to take an 11-6 lead. CU had a hard time siding out in the frame and the Ducks went up 20-10, forcing CU to use a timeout. The Buffs took three of the next five points but weren't able to hold off the Ducks as they finished the set 25-13. The Ducks hit .256 in the set and held the Buffs to .000.
The Ducks took a 13-8 advantage to start the second frame. The Buffs fought hard but weren't able to get their offense going as UO had an answer for all of their attacks. After the Ducks increased their lead to 21-12, Kritza used CU's second timeout of the set, but Oregon came back to close the game (25-13) with a 3-1 run. UO hit .548 in the set, but the Buffs hit better in the frame at .296.
The third set started with Oregon taking a 10-6 lead and increased it to 14-7. The Buffs put together a 4-1 run to bring the score to 15-11, but the Ducks answered back with four straight points. CU took two of the next three, but Oregon finished the match with a 5-1 run (25-14). CU hit .034 while the Ducks hit .385.
The Buffs will host Oregon State on Saturday at 7 p.m. to continue their four-match homestand.
"I have full confidence in my team," Kritza said "They're going to come back, they're going to bounce back and stay committed to improving. They're going to show progress and I have no doubts that they will do what they need to do to take on another high level opponent tomorrow in Oregon State. We're expecting a battle. We wanted a much better fight tonight, but we simply couldn't get our offense firing enough to combat a team that's hitting at 385. I do have all the confidence in the world in these kids and I know they'll get it together. They're going to fight harder than anybody else to protect their home court. They promised me that tonight.
And don't forget to check out the latest news and highlights with coach Kritza on This Week in Colorado Volleyball, exclusively on BuffsTV at CUBuffs.com/volleyball. New shows air every Tuesday.