Buffaloes Host No.10 Washington
BOULDER — Colorado volleyball hosts No.10-ranked Washington this Friday at 1:30 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. with both matches televised on the Pac-12 Network.
The Buffaloes (4-2) are coming off of a pair of losses to No.22 Washington State in Pullman. Colorado struggled against the Washington State defense, hitting under .200 in both matches. Despite the struggles offensively, the Buffs had momentum in the third and fourth sets in the first match against the Cougs, before WSU went on a 13-4 run to steal momentum and the match.
The brightest spot in the two losses for CU was Pac-12 hitting percentage leader Rachael Fara who hit .387 in the two matches against one of the strongest defenses Colorado will face this season. Fara is hitting .463 this season, only hitting more than two errors in a match once against WSU. The two-time transfer graduate student has found a home with the Buffaloes and is one of the most effective slide hitters that the Buffs have had in some time.
Colorado has had a mix of outside hitter this season, led by Elissa Alcantara's 58 kills. Directly behind her is Sterling Parker with 48, Fara with 47, Jill Schneggenburger with 40 and Leah Clayton with 21 in two matches. Colorado continues to experiment with all, as only Parker and Schneggenburger have played in every set this season as a pin hitter.
Both matches are televised live on the Pac-12 Washington channel, and will reair later that same day on the national channel.
SCOUTING THE HUSKIES
The top-10 team in the nation is a formidable opponent heading to Boulder. The Huskies were caught sleeping to start the season, getting swept against Arizona State at home in the first match. They have since swept Arizona, Oregon State and No.18 UCLA with a lone five-set loss to the Bruins in the first matchup in Los Angeles. The Huskies recorded 17 blocks in the five-setter against the Bruins and a dozen in the sweep, foreboding a similar matchup for Colorado as it was against WSU. Washington is also second in the conference in aces per set, giving Colorado a troublesome matchup Friday and Sunday.
The Huskies are led by Samantha Drechsel who is hitting .296 with 106 kills. Claire Hoffman is her counterpart with 98 kills and a .266 hitting percentage. Ella May Powell runs the offense with 10.1 assists per set. Drechsel and Lauren Sanders are the top blockers with 30 and 36 blocks, respectfully.