Arizona Falls in Five Set Heartbreaker to UNC
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – The Wildcats lost their first match of the season in five sets to North Carolina. Arizona forced the match to five sets after winning sets 2 and 4, but fell 12-15 in the final set.
Three of Arizona's attackers had 14 or more kills led by Sofia Maldonado Diaz with 15 kills while hitting .321. Jaelyn Hodge and Puk Stubbe both recorded 14 kills.
North Carolina won the first set 25-20. Hodge led the Cats with five kills and Arizona had two blocks, but the Tar Heels made early runs in the set to keep a steady lead in front of Arizona.
Arizona won the second set, 25-20, to tie the match. The Cats hit .484 in the second set and were led by Maldonado Diaz with five kills and Stubbe with four kills. Hodge and Zyonna Fellows each had three kills. Arizona rallied from behind UNC to tie the match at 19-19, then broke away with a 4-0 run to win the set.
The Tar Heels won the third set, 25-23. Although Arizona out-hit and out-blocked North Carolina, the Tar Heels took advantage of four service errors committed by the Wildcats to win the set by two points. Maldonado Diaz had five kills and Stubbe had four kills for the second-straight set.
The Wildcats were dominant in their 25-17 fourth-set win to force a fifth set. Arizona took the lead early in the set by forcing UNC errors. Hodge led the offense with five kills and Fellows followed with three kills. On defense, Alayna Johnson shut down the UNC attack with three block assists.
North Carolina won the fifth set, 15-12. Both teams traded points until the Tar Heels pulled away to win after Arizona tied it at 9-9 on Stubbe's third kill of the set.
Kills: Sofia Maldonado Diaz – 15
Assists: Emery Herman – 41
Digs: Kamaile Hiapo – 19
Blocks: Alayna Johnson – 7