Huskies Clamp Down On Bruins In L.A.
LOS ANGELES – UCLA hit the Huskies with their best shot, but the Dawgs got up and kept coming, and eventually wore down the Bruins to take a big early season road win at Pauley Pavilion. 18th-ranked Washington (10-2) completed a 2-0 opening Pac-12 week and won its sixth-straight overall with a 21-25, 25-21, 25-17, 25-19 victory in an ESPNU televised match.
The Bruins saw their standout outside hitter Charitie Luper return to the starting lineup for the first time since UW was last at Pauley Pavilion near the end of the 2021 regular season, and Luper helped UCLA hit a scorching .625 in the first set. But the Huskies stayed focused, adjusted, and after taking a tight second set, UW cooled UCLA down to .179 and .188 attack percentages in the final two sets to pull away.
"Things steadily improved at the net and behind it after the first set," said Head Coach Keegan Cook. "We talked about turning it into a grittier match and extending some rallies, and that things would get better for us if we did that. Little by little we did, and we were really steady siding out as well. We talked about last year, we were in this same environment and situation, and we felt like we missed that moment, and we were determined not to miss it again. So really proud of the performance."
— Washington Volleyball (@UWVolleyball) September 26, 2022
Washington wound up outhitting UCLA for the match, .365 to .318, and had a 7-3 advantage in aces and a 8.0 to 3.0 lead in blocks.
Ella May Powell moved up two more spots in the Pac-12 career assists top-10, passing Holly McPeak and Dana Burkholder into eighth with 41 assists tonight, giving her 5,452. Powell added a career-high tying six kills on nine attempts, plus 10 digs for the 57th double-double of her career and fifth this season.
All-American senior Claire Hoffman had her own double-double with a team-high 17 kills, hitting .298, with 10 digs for her 14th career double-double. She also added two aces. Sophomore Emoni Bush put away 13 kills on a .357 attack percentage and had three blocks, while senior Marin Grote was excellent again, posting a dozen kills on a .579 percentage with three stuffs.
Madi Endsley also tallied seven kills with two aces, and libero Lauren Bays had eight digs and eight big assists. Kate Morin (7 digs) and Olivia Mikkelsen (8 digs) helped slow down UCLA's early pace, and Sianna Houghton had a pair of aces. Sophomore Sophie Summers led the blocking with five block assists.
S3 | NOPE?? There's Grote??
— Washington Volleyball (@UWVolleyball) September 25, 2022
UP NEXT: UW will be back in California next week, heading to the Bay Area to face Stanford on Sept. 30 at 6 p.m. followed by a trip to Berkeley to play the Bears on Oct. 2.
SET ONE: The first two Husky kills came from Claire Hoffman as the teams were even at 3-3. It was 5-5 before a couple errors by the Dawgs and a UCLA ace made it 5-9. Endsley stopped the run with her first kill. Ednsley and Grote teamed for a rejection to make it 8-10. The teams continued trading points, with Powell hitting down a UCLA overpass for 11-12. It was 13-15 at the media timeout with UW hitting .467 but UCLA over .600 at that point. A couple UCLA points forced a Husky timeout at 15-18. Hoffman broke that with a kill in serve-receive, then Grote killed a transition slide to get back within one at 17-18. Hoffman then evened it up, tooling the block for 18-all, and UCLA took time. Now it was UCLA scoring twice out of the timeout, with a Hoffman kill making it 19-20. But a couple more Bruin points got them to set point at 20-24. UW saved one with a Emoni Bush block but UCLA converted its second chance to end it.
Washington hit a stellar .448 but UCLA was practically flawless offensively hitting .625. Hoffman had six kills without an error on 11 swings.
SET TWO: Kate Morin started the second at DS and had the first pass to lead to a Endsley kill. Endsley had a tape-help ace for 3-1. Powell and Summers went up for a rejection on the right for 6-3 Dawgs. Kills by Bush and Endsley kept UW siding out, and a Bays ace made it 10-7. The teams traded sideouts with a couple UCLA service errors until a small Husky run sparked by a Bush-Summers block. Hoffman then terminated a Lauren Bays bump set. Summers then dropped a kill down off an overpass for 18-14 and forced a UCLA timeout. The Bruins got the kill and then got a tape-help ace and converted the next transition kill to quickly cut the gap back to one. Hoffman snapped it with a snap of the wrist from the left for 19-17. She added another from Powell on the next point to get back to 20-17. Grote got a kill off a UCLA block error, then put another to the floor on the next point for 22-18. A couple back for UCLA prompted a UW timeout, but UCLA missed serve out of the break. Olivia Mikkelsen laid out for a fantastic save that led to a Bruins error for set point at 24-20. UCLA saved one, but then Hoffman cracked a back row kill to end it, 25-21.
Hoffman, Bush, and Grote all had four kills each in the second and Powell had 12 assists and six digs as the Huskies hit .389, just ahead of the .378 pace for the Bruins.
SET THREE: A great first rally was ended by Hoffman off the block and out. Another gritty rally had a Hoffman finish, and after a UCLA error, Grote crushed a slide kill for 5-1 and UCLA took the early timeout. Two more kills by Grote and Hoffman made it 8-2 Dawgs. Bush got a kill on the block touch, then swiped a tight set off the block for 11-4. UCLA had a 3-0 run to cut it to 12-8, but Endsley and Summers had a big rejection to snap that streak. Hoffman then got one to drop and Grote had a kill on a UCLA block error, and then the Dawgs roared after a booming block from Grote to make it 16-9. Hoffman served an ace for 18-11, then Powell had a backwards dump for 19-13. Another Powell dump, this one forward to the sideline made it 21-13. Bush wiped off the block for 23-16 Dawgs. After a UCLA error and a timeout, the Bruins saved one but then served out for 25-17.
Washington finally held the Bruins in check while still putting up great numbers on its own side. The Huskies hit .343 while UCLA was down to .179. Grote killed all four of her swings and Morin chipped in five digs.
WE'RE EVEN!! Claire crushes to end it. ????
— Washington Volleyball (@UWVolleyball) September 25, 2022
SET FOUR: Endsley found an opening for a finish for 2-2 in the fourth. UCLA went on a 3-0 run but the Huskies clawed back quickly to even at 6-6 with a Bush kill and a Bruin error. An ace from Sianna Houghton inched UW ahead, 7-6. Hoffman took tough inside set and went off the block and out for 11-10. Grote hung in the air to block down the UCLA tip try for 13-11. Grote added two slide kills as the teams traded points to 15-13 and the media timeout. Houghton dropped her second ace in out of the break for 16-13. A huge block ended a marathon rally as Summers and Bush met to fire UW up at 17-14. Hoffman had a transition rip from the left for 20-16. Hoffman then painted the sideline for an ace to force a UCLA timeout at 23-18. A Bruin error made it match point at 24-18, and on the second chance, Powell threw down on two to end it, 25-19.
The Huskies slowed UCLA down to .188 in the fourth, while hitting .269 with three aces.