Huskies Drop Season Opener To Sun Devils
SEATTLE – The Husky volleyball team enjoyed a lot of firsts today, but was unable to add the first win of the season to that list, as Arizona State upset the 8th-ranked Dawgs, 25-20, 25-15, 28-26, at Alaska Airlines Arena. The 2020-21 season finally got underway for the Pac-12 today after being postponed from the fall.
In the first ever January match, the Huskies saw the collegiate debuts for redshirt freshmen Olivia Mikkelsen and Sophie Summers, and true freshman Madi Endsley. Sianna Houghton and Shannon Crenshaw both took turns playing libero for the first time in today's match.
Summers was impressive in the middle with six kills on a .600 attack percentage, with a team-high five blocks. Endsley had four kills, two blocks and her first ace, and Mikkelsen had seven assists in her debut, as the Huskies used a 6-2 rotation for the first set and much of the second.
But Arizona State had its way offensively all day, hitting .339 compared to .207 for the Huskies. Washington had a set point to extend the match at 25-24 in the third set, but ASU answered with three in a row to close it out.
It was the first season opening setback for the Huskies in Head Coach Keegan Cook's six years.
"We started off not serving at a super high level which puts you in a tough situation right away, and then I didn't think we were hitting with a lot of purpose, which allowed their ball control players to manage a lot of situations," said Cook. "In the third set we hit with more purpose and showed some intangibles, but really mostly just a disciplined performance from Arizona State from start to finish."
Junior Claire Hoffman led the Huskies with 12 kills on 27 swings with just one error for a .407 attack percentage. Junior Ella May Powell, who led the Pac-12 in aces in 2019, had a career-high with five today, and added 24 assists and 11 digs for a double-double.
UP NEXT: Washington gets a chance at quick revenge as the same two teams will be back in action at the same time on Saturday, a 3 p.m. first serve, with the live stream on GoHuskies.com.