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Volleyball's road ends in Waco

Dec 3, 2021

WACO, Texas – Taking on the fifth-seeded Baylor Bears (22-5), Washington State (20-12) came up short in its bid to keep its postseason alive as the Cougs fell in three to end their run Friday night in Waco, Texas. 
Set scores from the match were: 27-25, 25-21, 25-20 in favor of the Bears.
Evenly matched, the Cougs got an early jump on the Bears thanks to the play of junior Magda Jehlarova as the third-year middle came up with four of WSU's first five points of the match posting three kills and a block before rotating out the front row. The quick start by the Cougs would give way as the Bears attack found its rhythm to push out in front 15-13 at the media timeout. Despite being out hit, the Cougs stayed close in the set thanks to their serve in the opening frame of the match as Argentina Ung tallied two aces while a late one from Karly Basham brought the Cougs back to even. After a pair of mistake by the Cougs let the Bears slip ahead once again the Cougs answered with a 4-0 run on the back of freshman Katy Ryan who came with back-to-back kills before combining with Kalyah Williams on a block to claw back into the set. The Cougs were on the brink of taking the opening set after consecutive aces from Jehlarova ran the score to 24-22, however it was not to be as the Bears fought off the two set points and a third moments later to steal the first set victory out from under WSU.

The Bears run continued into the second set as they jumped out to a quick 6-2 lead while WSU's offense struggled to find its rhythm. Even when the serve brought the Cougs back into the set the Bears had an answer as it seemed like every time WSU tied the set up Baylor would respond with a quick spurt of its own to pull back ahead. Trailing at the media, the Cougs turned to Ryan and Jehlarova once again as the duo tagged the Bears for three kills in four points to pull within one at 16-15. That would be as close as the Cougs would get as Baylor again responded with a run of their own pushing the lead to 22-18 and forcing a timeout. Looking for a spark the Cougs put star outside Pia Timmer into the match but even when she came up with her first kill in nearly a month of absence the jolt was not enough as the Bears put the set away to take the 2-0 lead.

The third continued the back-and-forth play as the two sides traded early points with kills from Ung and Ryan giving the Cougs the brief lead at 9-8. The one-point advantage would disappear when the Bears came up with a pair of aces as the Cougs' passing kept the team from completely taking over the set. Even with the small struggles WSU was able to feed Ryan on the outside as the young lefty posted five kills in the first 15 points giving the Cougs the 15-14 lead at the media timeout. That would be the last time the Cougs led as Baylor came out of the time out with five-consecutive points putting WSU in hole it could not recover from. The Cougs would claw back to within two at 22-20 when Jehlarova tallied a kill and her fourth block of the night, but the comeback was not to be as the Bears closed the match on a 3-0 run ending the evening and WSU's season in Waco.
Katy Ryan capped a stellar freshman season with 12 kills on .500 hitting (12-1-22). She added three blocks to her match total.


  • The Cougs season came to an end in the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the fifth time in 16 postseasons. WSU finished its season 20-12 overall.
  • The loss dropped the Cougs' record to 1-3 all-time against Baylor. The sweep was just the third of the year against the Cougs who dropped to 16-3 in three-setters in 2021.
  • Katy Ryan was the lone Coug to reach double figures finishing with 12 kills (.500). It was her seventh double digit kill performance of the year.
    • Ryan finished her first NCAA Tournament with 20 kills on .462 hitting in two matches in Waco.
  • WSU out aced (7-to-5) and out blocked (8-to-7) Baylor in the loss.
    • The Cougs dropped to 18-5 on the year when out acing their opponent and 17-4 when out blocking.
    • Magda Jehlarova (3) and Argentina Ung (2) tied career bests behind the service line to lead the Cougs.
    • Magda Jehlarova (2 BS, 2BA) and Kalyah Williams (1 BS, 3 BA) led the Cougs' block with 4 each.
      • Jehlarova ended her season with 168 blocks, tying for the 8th most in program single season history. Her two solo blocks brought her season total to 39 on the year, the 6th most in program history.
  • As a team, the Cougs' 7 aces brought their season total to 203, the fifth time the Cougs' have reach the 200 ace plateau in program history.
  • Penny Tusa played in her 139th career match tying the program's all-time record alongside of Kristen Hovde, (1989-92)