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Devils Drop Match To UCLA

Oct 7, 2022

TEMPE, Ariz. – In the first match back at Desert Financial Arena since August, Sun Devil Volleyball fell in straight sets (25-15, 25-18, 25-21) to UCLA on Friday night.

Notable Stats

  • Arizona State (8-9, 2-3 Pac-12) struggled to find a rhythm against UCLA (7-7, 1-4 Pac-12). The Bruins hit .327 and almost doubled the number of digs. 
  • Two Sun Devils reached double digits in kills. Matching for a game-high, junior Marta Levinska tallied 11 kills. Senior outside hitter Iman Isanovic added 10 to her career kills total in the match, putting herself in a tie for 12th place with Terri Cox in the record book.
  • Senior setter Shannon Shields had 20 assists and seven digs, as well as a season-high three kills.
  • Leading the defense was senior libero Annika Larson-Nummer with 12 digs.
     

Quotes
Arizona State Head Coach Sanja Tomasevic
Opening Statement:

"It was a tough one tonight. I think UCLA was great. But, I told the team after the game, I would love for us to decide what kind of team we are going to be. It's a little up and down. We sometimes show up like this and it's like, 'who's this?'. None of us are used to having a team that just doesn't want to fight, or is not fighting. I think the third set was a little bit better, but we started out pretty rough. Our serving was tough. We train here all the time, so we should definitely be serving a lot better than we did tonight. We had no aces and nine serving errors, so it's pretty tough. We put ourselves in a very tough position from the serving line."
 
On the ongoing struggles in the first set:
"As a staff, we noticed that we started off slow a couple weeks ago. We restructured the way we practice. Literally from the moment they're done with warmups, we go straight into a really hard drill to make sure that we are getting used to waking up right away. I had a conversation with some of them before, that it should not be anyone's job to get them excited to play the match. When is it go time? This is what we train for. We should be excited and ready to go out there."
 
On UCLA's blocks and how it impacted ASU's hitters:
"We couldn't pass. So, when you can't pass, all the balls go outside. When you're one dimensional as an offense they are able to put their biggest block in front of Iman [Isanovic], Geli [Cyr], and Marta [Levinska]. It was tough. Kudos to UCLA's defense. With our defense, and how we play defense, I thought they did a great job extending rallies and putting their hands on a lot of balls."

Senior Libero Annika Larson-Nummer
On her relationship with fellow libero Jaden Ravnsborg:

"I think that the best thing you can do as a teammate is have each other's back. And I think Jaden and I, we've definitely grown together in this season. I think she knows that I have her back no matter what. It's very easy to compete with her, I think because we don't pin ourselves against each other. And so when we're doing that, we're able to play together as a team. And I feel a lot of comfort out there with her. And I think we've talked about it and we both have comfort with each other just because we go after it. We've been building that relationship for each other, not against each other. So I think that's so important. on all scales in every position."

On playing the first home game in over a month:
"It's kind of a lot, not gonna lie. We went all over the place. And I think we were all adjusting well, but I think we're so happy to just be home, get our feet underneath us. And I think we are going to have a great game on USC."
 

Set One: UCLA 25, ASU 15
Going down by four from the jump made it difficult for ASU to get into the opening set. Levinska found a hole in UCLA's side to put up the first point. The Bruins ran away with it, putting together multiple runs. Levinska got ASU two in a row off kills for a 17-8 score. Isanovic's kill and UCLA's two errors put the set at 23-14. Cyr added one more point before UCLA finished it off with a kill.

Set Two: UCLA 25, ASU 18
The Sun Devils opened the second set with a strong rally, ending in their favor, as Levinska notched the first point. ASU continued to stay within range of UCLA, as Isanovic blocked UCLA's attack for a fourth point and Cyr tied the set at 6-6 with a kill. UCLA pulled ahead, up 18-12 after three in a row. Isanovic added her fifth kill to stay within five, however UCLA shot to 24 on two kills and an error, wrapping the set with a final kill.

Set Three: UCLA 25, ASU 21
ASU looked up for the challenge in the third set, level at five to begin. Levinska and Isanovic's kills put the Sun Devils up by two, holding the lead until UCLA gathered their 11th point on their fifth service ace. From then on, the Sun Devils trailed, but strayed no more than three away, until an error from ASU gave the Bruins their 24th point. Isanovic added her 10th and final kill before UCLA's kill completed the set and match.