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USC Women's Volleyball Falls in Five-Set Season Opener

Aug 27, 2021

LOS ANGELES – The USC women's volleyball team (0-1) was defeated in five sets (26-24, 15-25, 25-20, 22-25, 15-11) by Denver (2-0) in the third match of the 2021 Trojan Invitational at Galen Center on Friday, Aug. 27. It was the first meeting between the Women of Troy and the Pioneers.

  • Jr. OPP Emilia Weske scored 19.5 points and set a new career mark with 19 kills (5e, 35att, .400) 
  • Gr. OH Brooke Botkin added 13 kills (5e, 34att, .235) and had seven digs and a service ace.
  • Gr. MB Sabrina Smith posted 11 kills (0e, 17att) and hit .647 with two blocks in her USC debut.
  • Sr. setter Raquel Lázaro started the match and finished with 22 assists, seven digs, and four service aces. Fr. setter Mia Tuaniga had 21 assists and three service aces.
  • Gr. libero Shannon Scully led the back line with 12 digs and scored on five service aces.
  • For Denver, Lydia Bartalo had 16 kills, 11 digs, and seven service aces to lead the Pioneers. Gianna Bartalo had a match-high 20 digs. Erica Andrich tallied 11 kills (3e, 25att) and hit .320.


  • USC hit .263 and collected 55 kills (20e) on 133 attacks to go with 14 service aces but couldn't crack the code on the Pioneers who matched the Trojans with 54 kills (25e, 128att) and a .227 hitting rate with 14 aces of their own.
  • Despite erasing a seven-point deficit in the first set, USC fell short in a 26-24 loss. The Trojans came out and hit .310 in the second frame to tie the match on a 25-15 win.
  • USC led by as many as five (11-6) in the third, but the Pioneers went two-for-one and turned the tables to take a five-point lead at 21-16. DU held on to take a 25-20 win for a 2-1 lead in the match.
  • After 11 ties and seven lead changes, the Trojans closed out a 25-22 win on a 4-0 run that included three consecutive service aces from Scully.
  • Denver hit .316 in the decisive fifth set with eight kills (2e) on 19 swings and held the Trojans to just six kills to claim a 15-11 win to take the match.


  • The Women of Troy are back in action and will face Campbell (0-1) on Saturday (Aug. 28) at 10:30 a.m. PT in the fourth match of the Trojan Invitational at Galen Center. It will be the first meeting between the Trojans and the Camels.


  • USC and Denver met for the first time.
  • The Trojans had a four-match extending to the end of the spring season snapped in the loss.

For more information on the USC women's volleyball team and a complete schedule and results, please visit Fans of the Women of Troy can follow @USCWomensVolley on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.