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Cougs fall in five to No. 15 Stanford

Oct 22, 2021

PULLMAN, Wash. – In a battle at the top of Pac-12 standings No. 22 Washington State (12-7, 6-3) came up short of another upset win, falling in five to No. 15 Stanford (12-5, 7-2) Friday night at Bohler Gym.

Set scores from the match were: 26-28, 25-15, 23-25, 28-26 and 15-8 in favor of the Cardinal.

In match that would see huge rallies and big swings in momentum it was the Cougs who jumped out to a quick lead in the opening set of the night before the Cardinal rallied to force the set into extra points. Despite the Cardinal rally the set would turn for the Cougs at the service line as WSU came up with four aces including the set winner as Penny Tusa capped off a three-point swing for the Cougs to nab the opening set victory.
Despite grabbing the opening set win and with it the early momentum the Cougs found themselves on the wrong side of a run away win in set two as the Cardinal made a handful of adjustments that paid off with the second set victory. The Cardinal were able to secure the victory in the set thanks to a nearly flawless attack as Stanford hit .607 against the Cougs in the frame to take the 10-point victory.
That runaway win would lead to another big lead for the Cardinal in the third set as Stanford found itself leading 21-16 late in the set with a 2-1 lead nearly in hand. However, the Cougs would mount their first furious comeback of the night finishing the set on a 9-2 run to steal away the win. The comeback was made possible thanks to the play of Magda Jehlarova in the middle and Katy Ryan on the pin as the two combined for four kills and a block to put an exclamation point on the comeback.
Up one and looking to close the match the Cougs again found themselves playing from behind in set four as the Cardinal again took control late in the set to put the Cougs backs against the wall. As they had done previous the Cougs responded by punching back, fighting off three-straight set points to force the set into extra points. While the Cougs defense, led by Karly Basham, came up with dig after dig to keep the set alive it was a balanced offense that brought the Cougs back as Pia Timmer, Jehlarova, and Tusa all recorded kills to knot the set at 24-24. Despite the run the Cougs could not flip the score and take the lead against the Cardinal as Stanford continued to do just enough to stay out front finally finishing off the set on their sixth attempt of the frame.
The Cardinal would use the momentum from holding off the late charge in set four to jump on the Cougs early in the final set to put WSU in a hole it could not climb out of this time.

Middle blocker Magda Jehlarova picked up her second-straight nine block match while adding 12 kills to her total.




  • The Cougs fell for the first time in five matches while dropping their third-straight home match. 
    • WSU fell to 1-2 in five-setters in Pac-12 play including two-straight at home.
    • The loss was the Cougs seventh-straight against the Cardinal.
  • The loss in set two snapped a 13-set winning streak for the Cougs.
  • WSU fell for just the fourth time in 16 matches after winning the opening set.
  • Stanford's .313 attacking marked the second-highest hitting percentage against the Cougs on the year and the highest since the opening match of the season against South Carolina.
  • Magda Jehlarova posted nine blocks in the match for the second-consecutive contest.
  • Penny Tusa recorded three aces in the match to run her career total to 129 to move past Carrie Couturier into third all-time in program history. 
  • WSU's 11 blocks was the fifth double-digit block performance of the season for the Cougs and fourth in Pac-12 play.
  • Washington State finishes the weekend against Cal, Sunday Oct. 24 with first serve scheduled for noon.