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Sun Devil Comeback Comes Up Short To No. 13 Ducks

Sep 26, 2021

TEMPE, Ariz. - Despite coming back down 2-0 to force a fifth set, Sun Devil Volleyball came up short to No. 13 Oregon in five (25-19, 25-14, 23-25, 23-25, 15-7) on Sunday afternoon in Desert Financial Arena.

Notable Stats

  • Arizona State (7-6, 0-2 Pac-12) played its seventh five-set match of the season, third in a row. ASU's record is now 2-5 in those contests.
  • This will be the lone matchup against the Ducks (11-1, 2-0 Pac-12) this season for the Sun Devils.
  • Sophomore middle blocker Claire Jeter had 13 kills on a .409 clip to reach double figures in kills for the seventh time this season, third match in a row. She also had three blocks and a career-high five digs.
  • Junior outside hitter Iman Isanovic notched 14 kills, reaching double figures for the 14th match in a row, dating back to last season. She added eight digs and a team-best two aces.
  • Sophomore setter Ella Snyder was the lone setter in the match, earning her fourth double-double of the season and 11th of her career with 45 assists and 12 digs. This was her second match of the season where she earned 40+ assists, fifth of her career.
  • Marta Levinska had 14 kills and 14 digs, her sixth double-double of the season and 10th of her career. The 14 digs is also a career high for the sophomore pin hitter.
  • This is Annika Larson's fourth match in a row to reach double-digit digs (ninth of the season), earning 13 today. 
  • Freshman Geli Cyr made her first career start against the Ducks. She had one kill and two digs.

Arizona State Head Coach Sanja Tomasevic

Opening Statement
"We're going to have to be better at executing. Coming out stronger and executing better. I need some time to reflect on this game, but I know for sure that in these fifth sets we're going to have to find somebody who's going to take us home. We're going to have to find Brooke Nuneviller on the other side. She came on the court and said, 'I'm taking this home,' and she did. We don't have that person. Nobody wants that responsibility and somebody's going to have to step in those shoes. It can't be anybody else but people on the court, so we're going to have to find that person."

On how serving affected the game:
"I really disliked our first two sets, we missed six serves in set one. We came out earlier this morning for thirty minutes on the court and all we did was serve. We talked about the pressure serving and we missed six serves in our own gym to start a match. That's unacceptable, there is no excuse for that. It shouldn't take us that long to get going. We practice in the mornings… we know what it takes to be awake and ready to go, so we're going to have to come out stronger."

On what they need to focus on for the rest of Pac-12 play:
"Fighting hard and staying in the matches shouldn't be enough for us. Good, we're not getting smoked, we're fighting but we need to win, and to win you have to focus on the little things. Everything matters: how you prepare for the match, how you tie your hair, how you do your shoelaces, what you did the night before. All of that stuff correlates, all of that stuff is important when you come to this level. People think it's just a magical moment that's going to happen on a game day. There's so much that leads to a game day that we don't pay attention to. I talked to them about it a lot, there are no little things. We have to be better at focusing on the little things because little things are the difference makers of winning championships or not. Everybody in the Pac-12 can do big things, and we did big things tonight too, but they won because they had little things and they had somebody who really wanted to win."

On Sophomore Middle Blocker Claire Jeter:
"Claire has a really good arm. She can hit any shot. She can hit cross-line, zone one, or zone five. She does a really good job. I think her and Ella's connection is pretty good. Claire has been that consistent piece in our offense, but we get her in front for only three rotations, unfortunately. We need other people to execute as well."

Sophomore setter Ella Snyder
On team morale after dropping in five to ranked teams
"We're bummed. We work so hard to get that fifth set and we put everything we have out and then it doesn't go our way, which is such a bummer. I know our team is not going to give up, we're going to keep taking these teams and we're going to fight every single time. Next weekend we play Cal and Stanford and we are going to take them. It's not over. It's the beginning of the season, and we're going to learn from this and move forward."

On what needs to improve before Stanford next weekend
"I believe it's consistency. We need to be consistent throughout the whole match and not go through ups and downs. Oregon is such a solid team and we need to have that consistency and learn from them and learn from any Pac-12 team. We're going to face some hard teams and we need to learn how to deal with it and move on and be as consistent as we can because that's the name of the game."

On what changed going into third set
"In the huddle we said that we are making mistakes and they aren't doing anything special. Not to take away from (Oregon) but we were giving that game up and we needed to play our side. I think we just adjusted and had a mindset that we would take this to the fifth set and it's not even a question. I think that was the shift, that we need to do our job and our side would take care of business and we're going to take this to the fifth set."

Set One: Oregon 25, Arizona State 19
Oregon went on an early four-point run to lead Arizona State, 7-4. The Devils stopped the run and battled to tie the score at 13-13 after an error from the Ducks. Oregon took back the lead by going on a 4-0 run, causing the Devils to call a timeout. After a kill from Oregon, Beatrice Badini stopped another run with a kill to make the score 18-14. The Ducks won the first set on a 4-1 run, 25-19. 

Set Two: Oregon 25, Arizona State 14
The Ducks started off the second set by scoring seven in a row to make the score 7-2 before the Sun Devils called a timeout. After the timeout and a kill from Oregon, Claire Jeter stopped the run by earning two kills to make the score 12-5. ASU then went on a three-point run with two kills from Iman Isanovic, 14-8. Later in the set, another 3-0 run for Oregon made their lead 23-13 and the visitors would ultimately take the set, 25-14. 

Set Three: Arizona State 25, Oregon 23
Arizona State broke away early in the set with a two-point lead, 6-4, after a kill from Isanovic. The Sun Devils continued to add to their lead, going on a 3-0 run to make the score 11-8. Oregon ended Arizona State's run by going on their own three-point run to tie it up at 11-11. With a kill from Jeter and Isanovic, the Devils got back on top, 19-16, making the Ducks call a timeout. After Oregon scored three-straight points, the visiting team minimized Arizona State's lead to only one, 20-19, before Arizona State called a timeout. Oregon made a late push, but it wasn't enough as Marta Levinska put the ball away to win the third set, 25-23. 

Set Four: Arizona State 25, Oregon 23
The fourth set started with the score going back and forth. The Ducks shortly crept away from the Sun Devils, going on a 4-0 run to make the score 11-7 before the Devils called a timeout. After the timeout, Roberta Rabelo stopped the Ducks' run by earning a kill and minimizing their lead. Arizona State put together a massive 10-2 run to lead the Ducks, 19-15, that saw a couple kills from Levinska and an ace from Isanovic.  The Ducks benefited from a couple Sun Devil errors, putting them down by two, 22-20. The Devils pulled it out after a late rally from the Ducks, a kill from Isanovic clinching the win, 25-23. 

Set Five: Oregon 15, Arizona State 7
Oregon started the fifth set strong, scoring the first three points. But a kill by Isanovic got Arizona State on the board. ASU later went on a 3-0 run with a kill and ace from Levinska to tie the score, 5-5. The Ducks then broke away from the Sun Devils before the media timeout, up 8-5. Oregon went on a 6-0 run to win the fifth set, 15-7. 

Up Next
Arizona State will travel to the Bay Area next weekend to face Stanford on Friday and Cal on Sunday. The game against the Cardinal will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network while the matchup against the Bears will be on the Cal Live Stream.