No. 2 UCLA Outhits Buffaloes
BOULDER - Kerra Schroeder recorded a match-high 19 kills but it wasn't enough as No. 2 UCLA lived up to its ranking defeating the University of Colorado volleyball team 25-18, 25-16, 25-20 on Sunday afternoon at the Coors Events Center.
Nikki Lindow added five kills for CU and Emily Alexis recorded three. In the back court Megan Beckwith had a good performance picking up a match-high 15 kills. Michelle Miller dished out 27 assists in the match as the Buffs hit .163.
The Bruins were a tough opponent; hitting .308 with 50 kills. Bojana Todorovic led UCLA with 12 kills and 12 digs while hitting .750. The Buffs forced 17 Bruin hitting errors and committed just 13 of their own.
"There's a reason that they're ranked as high as they are," coach Liz Kritza said. "They are pretty balanced and they have size. We have the ability to play competitively with teams at this level. It's just a matter of consistency."
This was the fifth contest in six matches for the Buffs against a ranked opponent and the fourth in that stretch against a top-five team.
"We talked in the huddle after the match and said, 'Education is never a bad thing,' because we had progress tonight, we all of a sudden are feeling more confident and are expecting a lot more from ourselves, which is not a bad thing, but it allows a little bit of disappointment to creep in if we're not progressing at the same pace," Kritza explained.
The Buffs showed a lot of heart in the match and started the contest off with a 6-1 lead in the first set. The Bruins answered back and tied the set at 7-7, but the Buffs would again take back the lead and go up 12-10. UCLA then took control of the set with a 14-3 run, bringing the score to 24-15. The Buffs didn't roll over and fought off the next three set points before falling 25-18 in the frame.
The second set saw UCLA take a 9-3 lead. The Bruins extended it to 15-5 before CU put together its own run of 7-3, narrowing the score to 18-12. UCLA pulled away again with a 6-3 run to get to set point at 24-15. The Buffs fought off the first set point but the Bruins won the set on the following point (25-16).
CU got out to a 5-3 led in the third set and UCLA tied it up at 6-6. There would be three more times in the set that the score would be tied. The Bruins took the lead at 12-9 and despite the Buffs battling hard; UCLA would keep the lead and went on to take the set 25-20, as well as the match.
Colorado fell to 5-10 overall, 0-7 in the Pac-12, while UCLA improved to 13-2, 6-1 in the Pac-12.
The Buffs head out on the road next weekend to play No. 3 Washington on Friday, October and Washington State on Saturday, October 8. Both contests are slated for 8 p.m. MST starts. 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.