15th-Ranked Bruins Take Down Trojans in Four
LOS ANGELES - Senior Mac May led the Bruins with 14 kills to go with seven digs, while redshirt junior Emily Ryan set a season high with nine blocks, adding seven kills, as the 15th-ranked Bruins defeated USC in four sets on Friday at Galen Center. Set scores were 25-15, 14-25, 25-20, 25-17.
UCLA had a season-best 13 blocks. Freshman Iman Ndiaye had an outstanding match with 11 kills and only one hitting error in 20 attempts for a .500 hitting percentage to go with four blocks. Senior Sabrina Smith also had a great hitting night, tying a career high with eight kills on only error in 13 swings for a .538 percentage. Junior Zoe Fleck added 13 digs, junior élan McCall tied a season high with 13 digs to go with seven kills and two aces and redshirt sophomore Lexi Hadrych had four kills and three blocks. Freshmen Audrey Pak (20 assists, seven digs) and Kate Lane (22 assists, two digs) set the Bruins to a .266 hitting percentage.
There were only two ties in the opening set at 1- and 2-all, as the Bruins (12-5) scored four in a row and eight of 10 to go up by half a dozen. Two Smith kills and a block with Ndiaye to go with a McCall kill made it 6-2. After USC (3-8) scored two of the next three, an Ndiaye kill, a Trojan attack error and a Smith ace put the Bruins ahead 10-4. At 18-11, kills by Ndiaye and May and a Ryan/Ndiaye block gave the Bruins their first double-digit lead of 10, a set high. On UCLA's second set point, a USC service error finished up a 25-15 win. May had five kills in the opening set, McCall posted six digs and three kills and Ryan added four blocks. The Bruins out-hit the Trojans .257 to .061.
The Bruins could muster only one lead at 2-1, and despite four early ties, the Trojans ran away with the second, winning 25-14. May was 3-for-8 with no errors in the set, while Fleck and McCall each had four digs. The Bruins were out-hit .429 to .028.
UCLA raced off to leads of 5-1 and 8-2 in the third set, as Ndiaye and Ryan kills, a Lane ace and two USC errors gave the Bruins their first handful of points. After a Trojan sideout, a May ace and two more USC errors made it 8-2. The Trojans scored the next three, but four in a row for the Bruins on a Hadrych kill, back-to-back from May and another from McCall gave UCLA a set-best lead of seven at 12-5. USC would storm back to re-take the lead at 17-16, but a Hadrych kill and block with Ryan gave the Bruins the lead for good. Tied at 19, UCLA scored six of the last seven, recording the first three points on kills from Smith and Ndiaye and a McCall solo block. After a sideout, Ndiaye and May kills and a McCall ace closed out a 25-20 win. Ndiaye was a perfect 5-for-5 in kill attempts in the third, May added three and Fleck had four digs. The Bruins out-hit the Trojans .462 to .250.
The Bruins never trailed in the fourth set, jumping out to an early 13-4 lead. Four of the points came on blocks, as Hadrych and Ryan both posted solo stuffs, with Ryan combining with May and Hadrych on blocks. Ryan also had two kills, McCall served an ace and Smith, Hadrych and Lane had kills. At 14-7, a 4-1 UCLA run on two Smith kills, a May kill and a USC error put the visitors up by double figures for the first time. Ten would be the largest lead of the set for the Bruins, as kills from Ryan and Hadrych wrapped up a 25-17 win. Ryan had four kills and three blocks in the fourth, May added four digs and three kills and Smith was 3-for-3 with no errors. The Bruins out-hit the Trojans .387 to .118.
The Bruins and the Trojans square off again on Sunday at Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom. First serve is at 4:30 p.m. and the match will be televised on Pac-12 Networks.