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Beavers Split First Day of Asics Invitational

Sep 9, 2022

CORVALLIS – Oregon State split the opening day of the Asics Invitational on Friday, knocking off North Texas 3-1 (25-22, 23-25, 25-14, 25-21) before dropping the nightcap to 3-0 (28-26, 25-20, 25-13) to Utah State.
Match 1: Oregon State 3, North Texas 1 (25-22, 23-25, 25-14, 25-21)
The Beavers unleashed their best defensive performance of the season to date in a victory over the Mean Green.
Aliyah McDonald was a force in the middle, finishing with 10 blocks to lead the Beavs to a season-high 17.5 stops. Mychael Vernon added seven blocks to go with 13 kills and 17 digs for a strong all-around day.
Oregon State survived a tough hitting day in the first set thanks to outstanding defense at the net. The Beavs hit just .061 but held UNT to a -.056 performance with a season-best 7.5 blocks. McDonald led the team with four blocks while Vernon, Inna Balyko and Kinley Swan each had three. OSU
After a late comeback gave UNT the second set, the Beavers dominated the third. Kateryna Tkachenko got the OSU attack back on track, leading the team with six kills in the frame, including two in a 6-0 run that opened the set. Oregon State steadily opened up the lead from there, turning a 11-5 score into a 20-11 advantage. McDonald and Vernon combined for three kills in the final four points to secure the set.
The Beavers controlled much of the fourth set before surviving a late run to get the victory. Two kills from Izzi Szulczewski and an ace from Keira Herron were key in a 4-0 run that gave OSU control of the set with a 19-12 lead. A persistent UNT squad made a 5-1 run to make the home fans nervous before Szulczewski and McDonald secured the match for the Beavs with a late block.
Match 2: Utah State 3, Oregon State 0 (28-26, 25-20
Utah State used a .333 hitting day to overcome the Beavers in the nightcap.
The Beavs and Aggies battled throughout the first set, taking it all the way to 28 points to decide a winner. Oregon State trailed 6-2 early before roaring back with a 4-1 run to knot the set at 10. Neither team led by more than two the rest of the way. Szulczewski, Vernon and Tkachenko had five kills apiece, but Utah State pulled away with four of the set's final five points.
The second set looked to be headed for another wild finish before Utah State inched away. Tied at five, the Aggies went on a 5-1 run to go up 10-6. From there, USU kept Oregon State at arms-length for the rest of the set. DiLara Unal keyed a 3-0 run with her serving and a block, but the Aggies halted the run and went on to win 25-20.
Utah State dominated the final set of the day, using a pair of 5-0 runs to go up 12-4 and 17-6 en route to closing out the match.
Up Next
Oregon State returns to Gill on Saturday night to close out the Asics Invitational against Portland. First serve is set for 7 p.m.
Oregon State Athletics strives to Build Excellent Authentic Visionary Student-Athletes (Go BEAVS).