Sand Cats Selected for NCAA Championship, Reach Pac-12 Final
LOS ANGELES – After posting a runner-up finish to USC at the Pac-12 Beach Volleyball Championships, the Arizona sand volleyball team was selected to compete as the No. 6 seed in the 2016 NCAA Beach Volleyball Championships May 6-8 in Gulf Shores, Ala. The eight-team tournament will be televised nationally by TruTV on Friday, May 6 and Saturday, May 7 from Noon-3 p.m. MST, while TBS will air the championship match on Sunday, May 8 at 11 a.m. All championship site match times and more information about the championship can be found at ncaa.com/beachvolleyball.
The Wildcats closed out the conference tournament on Sunday by defeating Washington and UCLA before falling to the Trojans in the finals of the first ever Pac-12 Beach Volleyball Championships.
The Wildcats swept UW, 5-0. Arizona's No. 4 team of Mia Mason and Kalei Mau earned a victory against Justice Macgraw and Melanie Wade as they took the match to three sets, (21-11, 15-21, 15-10). Hailey Devlin and MacKenzie Kleespies picked up a win against UW's duo of Lindsay Chalmers and Destiny Julye, (21-17, 21-12). In a hard fought three-set rally, Madison and McKenna Witt came out with a win against Crissy Jones and Tia Scambray, (21-13, 16-21, 21-19). The No. 2 duo of Jianna Bonomi and Katarina Schulz battled past UW's Courtney Schwan & Cassie Strickland in a three-set match, (21-14, 20-22, 15-12). To secure the sweep, Olivia Macdonald and Sam Manley downed Jade Finau and Lianna Sybeldon in consecutive sets, (21-16, 21-12).
The Wildcats would then go on to defeat UCLA, 3-2, in a rematch from earlier in the tournament. Mason and Mau were defeated by Zana Muno and Jessyka Ngauamo, (21-11, 21-14), but Devlin and Kleespies downed UCLA's No. 5 duo of Julie Consani and Laurel Weaver after a hard fought three-set battle, (18-21, 22-20, 18-16). Macdonald and Manley picked up a win against the Bruins pair of Isabelle Carey and Elise Zapipia, (21-19, 21-13), while the Witts defeated the tandem of Megan McNamara and Nicole McNamara in a three-set rally (21-17, 18-21, 15-10). Bonomi and Schulz suffered a loss against UCLA's Ivey Schmitt and Kamila Tan, (21-19, 14-21,11-15).
Against USC, Devlin and Kleespies fell to USC's Jo Kremer and Zoe Nightingale, (21-23, 21-18, 11-14). The Trojans duo of Jenna Belton and Abril Bustamente picked up a win against Mason and Mau in straight sets, (21-14, 21-21) and the Trojans won the title as the Witts fell to USC's Kelly Claes and Sara Hughes (10-21,14-21). The matches at No. 2 and No. 3 were suspended.
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