Beavers Battle, Drop Two at CSU Tournament
FORT COLLINS, Colo. – Oregon State volleyball dropped two tightly contested matches on the first day of the Colorado State Tournament in Fort Collins, Colo. The Beavers (1-6, 0-0 Pac-12) battled Alabama Birmingham in the morning to kickoff weekend action before facing host, Colorado State, on Friday evening in Moby Arena.
Vs Alabama Birmingham (L – 24-26, 23-25, 21-25)
Friday morning's match was the first time Oregon State and UAB had met in program history. The Beavers battled through three challenging sets, dropping the match, 3-0, to the Blazers (2-3, 0-0 Ohio Valley). The Beavers gave UAB a challenge to start the match by hitting .294 in the first set, but couldn't maintain that pace as Oregon State dropped all-three sets by four points or less.
Offensively, OSU was led my freshman Mychael Vernon who racked up 14 kills and one solo block. Junior Lindsey Schell contributed eight kills, while Kateryna Tkachenko and Maddie Goings finished with seven and five kills, respectively. Freshman Izzi Szulczewski stayed hot picking up a double-double with 28 assists and 10 digs. Szulczewski also added six kills to the mix. Senior Grace Massey led the Beavers defensively with 13 digs.
The Blazers were led offensively by Fernanda Maida, who finished with 13 kills and three aces. As a team, UAB hit .333 with seven blocks.
- Vernon made her 2021 debut for the Beavers and started. Freshman Iris Coba also made her first appearance in the Orange and Black.
- Szulczewski recorded her fifth double-double of the season, and it is the 15th of her career.
- The UAB match was the first match of 2021 the Beavers didn't have a reception error throughout the match.
- Szulczewski and Tkachenko finished with two aces each.
- Freshman DiLara Unal led OSU with two blocks – one solo and one assisted.
At Colorado State (L – 25-21, 21-25, 16-25, 25-23, 13-15)
Oregon State started the second match of the day off on the right foot hitting .478 with 13 kills and only two errors off 23 attacks in the first set. After winning set one, the Beavers dropped the next two to Colorado State (3-3, 0-0 Mountain West) before posting 14 block assists in the fourth set to force a fifth. It was a back-and-forth battle in the final set, but the Rams came out victorious to claim a 3-2 victory over OSU.
Oregon State was led by Vernon and Tkachenko each tallying 17 kills. Tkachenko also finished with eight digs. Schell wasn't far behind with 13 kills and seven blocks. Szulczewski finished the match with 39 assists, nine digs, eight blocks and three kills to help OSU in the match. Massey finished with 19 digs to lead OSU, while Emma Villaluz finished with seven.
The Rams were led offensively by Jacqi Van Liefde, who finished with 16 kills and two blocks. As a team, CSU finished with 10 aces and 52 kills.
- OSU posted 78.0 points against the Rams for the most-points in a match this season.
- The Beavers finished with 14 block assists in the set four that helped tie the 2021 season-high for total blocks in a match (15.0).
- Villaluz and Ryan White both recorded two aces on the match. As a team, OSU finished with seven.
The Beavers conclude action in Fort Collins tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. against Southern Illinois Edwardsville.
For more information on the Oregon State volleyball team, follow the club's official Twitter account at Twitter.com/BeaverVBall, by Facebook at Facebook.com/BeaverVBall or on Instagram at Instagram.com/BeaverVBall.
Oregon State Athletics strives to Build Excellent Authentic Visionary Student-Athletes (Go BEAVS).