Buffs Fight But Fall To 'Cats
BOULDER - The University of Colorado volleyball team played another close match against Arizona, but lost 25-17, 25-22, 25-18 on Friday night at the Coors Events Center.
"Our difficulty in finding consistency in our first contact hurt us tonight," coach Liz Kritza said. "We simply cannot always be playing catch-up after a slow start or getting stuck in certain serve receive rotations. In this league, the team across the net will never give us that much room for error."
Nikki Lindow and Kerra Schroeder each recorded seven kills in the effort and Anicia Santos added five kills. Santos led CU at the net with four block assists. Elysse Richardson served as the libero in the match and picked up a team-best nine digs.
"Although the offensive load was more balanced tonight, our overall point production was not enough because of the high number of errors," Kritza said. "We challenged them tonight to take the positive that did occur and bring them back tomorrow with an even more aggressive attitude and willingness to step up and make plays at the crucial times."
Madison Kingdon led the Cats with 12 digs and Candace Nicholson recorded 14 of UA's 43 digs.
UA took a 9-5 lead to start the first set but CU got within a pair of points at 12-10. At that point the Wildcats put together a 6-0 run to increase their lead to 17-10. The Buffs took the following three points before UA took the serve back. UA would go up 21-15 and finished the set 25-17. The Wildcats hit .423 and held CU to just .062 in the set.
The Wildcats took at 9-2 lead to start the second set, but CU did not get discouraged and rallied back to tie the game at 12-12. UA used a 6-2 run to go back up 18-14, forcing the Buffs to use a timeout. CU came out of the break and took the next three points (18-17) causing UA to take a timeout. The Cats took the next three points, but CU answered back (21-18). The Buffs got within a point again at 22-21 and 23-22, but UA finished the set 25-22.
The third set started with UA taking a 9-4 lead. The Buffs put together a 5-2 to bring the score to 11-9. The Cats pulled away again to a 17-12 lead in the set, but once again the Buffs didn't give up. CU closed the gap to 19-18, forcing UA to take a timeout. The timeout worked for the Cats as they finished the set and won the match 25-18.
With the loss Colorado fell to 5-13 overall, 0-10 in the Pac-12, and UA improved to 12-6, 4-5 in the Pac-12.
"Credit to Arizona, they did a good job with their blocking on our key hitters, but we did not challenge them enough with our offensive system," Kritza said. "One thing that I love about these kids is that they will keep coming back and fighting until we get this right, no matter how many tough matches we drop or how frustrated we get. "
The Buffs are back on the court against Arizona State on Oct. 15 at 7 p.m. at the Coors Events Center. 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.