No. 1 USC Beach Volleyball Sweeps CSU Bakersfield
LOS ANGELES – The No. 1-ranked USC beach volleyball team (9-0) recorded its seventh 5-0 sweep of the season in a win over CSU Bakersfield (1-2) at Merle Norman Stadium on Thursday, March 18.
The Trojans improved to 8-0 in all-time meetings against the Runners and moved to 64-9 all-time at Merle Norman Stadium.
Each of USC's pairs won in straight sets. At the No. 5 position, sophomore twins Audrey Nourse and Nicole Nourse won their 17th straight match and scored the first dual point with a quick 21-10, 21-8 win over Seleisa Elisaia and Jazleigh Ortiz. One spot over, graduate Joy Dennis and freshman Delaynie Maple got a 21-12, 21-10 win against Brooke Boiseau and Anna Unke to make it 2-0 for USC in the dual.
The Trojans' grad-student duo of Hailey Harward and Julia Scoles delivered the clinching point from the No. 2 spot with a 21-12, 21-11 victory over Cameron Solberg and Milica Vukobrat. Moments later, senior Haley Hallgren and freshman Megan Kraft posted the fourth USC point on a 21-14, 21-13 win against Alaina Gendale and Hayley McCluskey at the No. 3 position.
USC completed the 5-0 sweep when junior Tina Graudina and senior Sammy Slater finished off Emily Hansen and Hana Makonova, 21-17, 21-18, at the No. 1 court. Graudina-Slater was named the Pac-12 Beach Volleyball Pair of the Week just hours before the dual began.
In an exhibition match, freshman Olivia Bakos and junior Mollie Ebertin collected a 21-17, 21-14 win over Mapuhola Sekona and Ericka Snopko to improve to 3-0 on the year as a pair.
The Trojans make a return trip to Malibu, Calif., on Sunday (March 21) to take on longtime rival No. 8-ranked Pepperdine (1-6) at 2 p.m. PT. USC and Pepperdine meet for the fourth time this season. The Trojans are 18-13 all-time against the Waves and have won six straight duals.
NOTE: All home USC beach volleyball competitions at Merle Norman Stadium will be conducted in accordance with the Pac-12 COVID-19 Medical Advisory Committee health and safety recommendations and guidelines, available at Pac-12.com/health.
For more information on the three-time national champion USC beach volleyball team and a complete schedule, please visit USCTrojans.com and follow @USCBeach on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
No. 1 USC def. CSU Bakersfield, 5-0
Merle Norman Stadium • Los Angeles, Calif.
Thursday, March 18, 2021
RECORDS: USC (9-0), CSU Bakersfield (1-2)
1. Tina GRAUDINA/Sammy SLATER (USC) def. Emily HANSEN/Hana MAKONOVA (CSUB); 21-17, 21-18
2. Hailey HARWARD/Julia SCOLES (USC) def. Cameron SOLBERG/Milica VUKOBRAT (CSUB); 21-12, 21-11
3. Haley HALLGREN/Megan KRAFT (USC) def. Alaina GENDALE/Hayley McCLUSKEY (CSUB); 21-14, 21-13
4. Joy DENNIS/Delaynie MAPLE (USC) def. Brooke BOISEAU/Anna UNKE (CSUB); 21-12, 21-10
5. Audrey NOURSE/Nicole NOURSE (USC) def. Seleisa ELISAIA/Jazleigh ORTIZ (CSUB); 21-10, 21-8
Exh. Olivia BAKOS/Mollie EBERTIN (USC) def. Mapuhola SEKONA/Ericka SNOPKO (CSUB); 21-17, 21-14
Order of finish: 5, 4, 2*, 3, 1