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Ducks Sweep OSU In Corvallis

Nov 26, 2021

CORVALLIS — The No. 19 Oregon volleyball team wrapped up its regular season in dominant fashion Friday, with setter Elise Ferreira feeding middle blockers Karson Bacon and Abby Hansen to the tune of 22 combined kills on .636 hitting in a sweep of Oregon State at Gill Coliseum.

Brooke Nuneviller matched Bacon with a team-high 12 kills, in the process becoming the 21st player in school history to reach 1,000 career kills. The Ducks finished the regular season 22-8 overall and 13-7 in Pac-12 play after Friday's 25-16, 25-16, 25-19 sweep.

"I thought it was really cool how great the middles were; that connection was awesome," UO coach Matt Ulmer said of Bacon, who set up match point by winning a joust at the net, and Hansen, who had kills to close out each of the last two sets. "And they weren't cheapies — they were big-time. So I thought that was a great connection."

How It Happened: Oregon State had an early 5-3 lead in the opening set before the Ducks took control. Daley McClellan took over service after an OSU error and made it a 5-0 run for Oregon, which included a block by Bacon with Taylor Borup and a kill by Bacon. After more back-and-forth, Hansen had a kill to give Oregon a 15-10 lead, and Nuneviller took over serve to get the Ducks two more points for a 17-10 lead. Hansen had a kill and assisted on a block with Morgan Lewis to set up set point, and Lewis finished it off at 25-16.

The Ducks hit .357 in the set, using a 5-1 rotation with Ferriera as the setter. Her usual counterpart in Oregon's 6-2, Kylie Robinson, was unavailable for the match.

"I knew I had to stay confident for my team," said Ferreira, who had 33 assists with eight digs. "I couldn't waver, because I'm a setter and I've gotta be on all the time. So I tried to go out there with an even mindset, and I thought it worked out."

The second set featured an extraordinary swing of momentum. After Oregon State scored the first seven points, the Ducks responded with 10 straight behind the serve of Georgia Murphy. The 10-0 run began with Bacon winning a joust, and included two kills by Hansen and one each from Nuneviller and Gloria Mutiri. Nuneviller had an ace and a kill out of the back row during a shorter UO run of four straight points to a 16-10 lead. An ace by Ferreira made it 19-10, and Hansen had the final point of the set.

"Georgia's service run in the second was absolutely unbelievable," Ferreira said. "Huge props to her. She did great to get us back in the match."

Ferreira was on serve for a similarly decisive run in the third. After an OSU service error put the ball in Ferriera's hands, she served the Ducks to five more points and a 14-5 lead. The Ducks spread the ball around during that run, getting two kills each from Bacon and Lewis, and one from Borup. After Hansen had a kill on a slide to put Oregon up 20-9, the Beavers mounted a rally, eventually closing within 23-19 on a service ace. But Bacon ended that run by winning a battle at the net, and Hansen finished off the sweep.

Who Stood Out: Nuneviller had 11 digs to go along with her 12 kills, giving her 16 double-doubles this season. Along with becoming the 21st player in UO history with 1,000 career kills, she became the seventh Duck with both 1,000 kills and 1,000 digs.

Bacon had 12 kills on .647 hitting, and Hansen had 10 kills with zero errors, while hitting .625. Lewis and Mutiri combined for eight kills on the right side, and Borup had a well-rounded impact with four kills, six digs and three blocks.

What It Means: The NCAA Tournament field will be announced Sunday evening, with Oregon holding out hope for an opportunity to host. The Ducks came into the week No. 23 in the RPI.

"I thought we had a lot of adversity, but I think it prepared us well for the tournament," Ferreira said. "And I think that's gonna benefit us to have gone through that in the regular season."

Up Next: The Ducks await word of their postseason fate Sunday.