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Buffs Suffer Tough Loss At No. 3 Washington

Nov 3, 2013

SEATTLE, Wash. — The University of Colorado volleyball team fell 3-0 (25-18, 25-15, 25-19) to the No. 3 Washington Huskies on Sunday afternoon at Alaska Airlines Arena, snapping a four-match win streak.

With the loss, the Buffs are 15-7 overall, 7-5 in the Pac-12. The Huskies improved to 19-1, 11-1 in the Pac-12. Their only loss of the season came earlier this year against CU on Oct. 4 in Boulder.

“Washington's service game was stellar tonight and we were not able to recover quickly enough to close the point scoring gaps in those sets,” coach Liz Kritza said. “We will take this setback and use it to continue to improve and climb as we progress through the conference season. We will get back in the gym and make corrections and help players continue to improve their respective skills before we take the court again.”

The Huskies, who lead the Pac-12 in aces per set, recorded eight in the match against CU. They also had seven service errors.

Taylor Simpson recorded a team-best 10 kills for the Buffs, while Kelsey English added nine kills. English didn’t commit a single error on the night and was set 15 times to hit .600.

“Kelsey English had a strong offensive performance tonight, but unfortunately it was not enough to spur on a different result,” Kritza said.

The Huskies held the Buffs to a .118 hitting percentage. CU had 32 kills in the match with 20 errors and 102 swings. Conversely, UW hit .299 with 41 kills and nine errors on 107 attacks.

Defensively the Buffs recorded one more dig than the Huskies (45-44). Cierra Simpson had 13 digs to lead the Buffs and Kerra Schroeder picked up eight digs.

The Huskies had a pair of players with double-digit kills. Kaleigh Nelson led the match with 13 kills and Krista Vansant recorded 10. Vansant led UW with 12 digs. The Huskies posted 9.0 team blocks in the win. Lianna Sybeldon put up seven block assists and Kylin Munoz had five block assists.

The Buffs fell behind 5-0 to start the match, but rallied back within a point at 9-8. UW rebuilt its lead back to 17-12 before CU called its first timeout. Out of that break, the Buffs took five of the next seven points to bring the score to 19-17. The Huskies put up two more points on the board to get back to a four-point lead, which forced CU to spend its final timeout of the set (21-17). The Buffs took the first point after the timeout with a kill from Schroeder, but the Huskies finished the frame with a 4-0 run (25-18).

The second set started out in favor of the Huskies as they went ahead 10-4. The Buffs were able to get within five points at 13-8, but unfortunately couldn’t get any closer and UW pulled away to a 25-15 set victory. CU hit .080 in the set with nine kills and seven errors on 25 swings, while the Huskies hit .478 with 13 kills and two errors on 23 attacks.

UW took the lead to start the third set, taking a 10-6 advantage. The Buffs stuck close and were still within four points at the media timeout (15-11). Out of that break, UW recorded three straight points (18-11). The Buffs continued to fight, but the Huskies increased their advantage to 21-13 before the Buffs took a timeout. After the break, CU recorded a 4-1 run (22-17) to force the Huskies to take a timeout of their own. UW took the first point after the timeout (23-17), but the Buffs weren’t done and sided-out for two more points (23-19). Unfortunately it wasn’t enough and UW finished the match on the following two points (25-19).

The Buffs will return home to the Coors Events Center next weekend where they are 5-0 in Pac-12 play this year (6-1 overall). They will face No. 6 Stanford on Friday, Nov. 8 and California on Saturday, Nov. 9. Both matches will begin at 7 p.m. and will be streamed live on the Pac-12 Digital Network.

“Coming off this tough weekend, we must take the stoic comeback at Washington State and the tough lessons learned today against a very strong Washington team and get back in the gym and get ready to continue along our path through the Pac-12,” Kritza said. “The strength of this conference is one of most exciting aspects for our players and coaches and we are enthusiastic about getting back to Boulder and preparing for another two quality opponents.”