Devils Fall To No. 18 Ducks
TEMPE, Ariz. – Two Sun Devils reached double-digit kills as Sun Devil Volleyball fell in straight sets to No. 18 Oregon (25-21, 26-24, 25-20) on Sunday afternoon in Desert Financial Arena.
- Arizona State (11-13, 5-7 Pac-12) came up short against No. 20 Oregon (15-5, 9-3 Pac-12) in straight sets. The Ducks' offense was strong, hitting .357 with 53 kills, compared to the Sun Devils' .269 clip and 38 kills.
- Junior pin hitter Marta Levinska had a double-double with 16 kills and 12 digs, both team highs. She also had two service aces.
- Iman Isanovic was the other Sun Devil to reach double figures in kills as she had 13 and maintains sole possession of 11th place in career kills with 1,283. She needs just 13 more kills to be in the top-10 for total career kills. She also had six digs.
- Senior setter Shannon Shields dished out 28 assists and added nine digs for a near double-double. She also had three kills.
- At libero, senior Annika Larson-Nummer extended her career-long streak of double-digit dig matches after collecting 10 today.
Head Coach Sanja Tomasevic
"Tough one. When you play a good team you have to show up. There's a difference between walking on the court to win and walking on the court not to lose. That's what I told the team after the match, that the entire time we were trying not to lose. You have to walk on the court with the intention to win. There's a different intention when you walk out to win versus not trying to lose."
On the players mindset
"You win together or lose together and I'm hoping that at some point the teammates are going to address it. We need to make sure that we all come out with the mindset that we have to win and no one is going to give us anything because we whine and complain. We have to go out there and earn it because when you get in the real work force, you can't whine your way into raises. You have to go and earn it. Those are lessons we need to learn here."
On what was good and what needs work
"I love what Marta did. I thought Iman did a great job. Both of them were playing well. I'm a little disappointed with the middles and blocking. I thought our off-blocking defense was a little rough. We made some adjustments at the end but those tips shouldn't be dropping down like that. That's just unacceptable. But I did like that Marta was dangerously lethal from the back row. At some point when we want to go a 6-2, that means that Marta is out, and we couldn't afford that. Marta had to stay on the court today, she was so good."
"I thought we should have been more aggressive. They have three rotations with two passers so we had a little more room for serving. We could've done a better job with that. We kept telling them they need to serve tougher, or they need to serve more aggressively. We were not missing our serves, and from a coaches standpoint if you're not missing your serves, then you're not going for it. Same thing with our offense. I felt like we were playing tentative. We should have been more aggressive. It comes back to the posture and the presence to win. It's my home. That should be the mindset. We need to be really intentional about those things."
Senior setter Shannon Shields
On the conversation and vibe
"After that first set I felt like we were slowly getting into it, getting our rhythm. After the second set, I felt like we were playing relatively good volleyball with our offense and stuff like that. But then tips were falling, there were some blocking mistakes, and we were not playing as tough as we could have done. We should play more of our game, we just let the small things happen and ruin what we were doing so well."
On her connection with Marta Levinska
"Marta is such a sweetheart. Even before I was starting, she was like 'I got you.' She's such a team player. We always have each other's backs and we're always texting each other like, 'Let's go get it today.' I feel like that's the stuff off the court that builds on the court. I feel like when I set her, she's going to get a good swing. If she gets blocked, I'm going to keep setting her. So it's been a process, but she's awesome."
On her personal mindset to rebound after mistakes
"My go-to thing is telling myself, 'I'm going to set my hitter perfectly.' If I give myself one good thing to do for the team, then everything else slows down… I like to focus on one thing. If I overload myself, then I'm doing too much and the team doesn't need that. I feel like when I get into a funk, I need to fix this one thing and build upon it. That's my mindset when the team is in a funk. And talking. I like to really talk when the team or I are in a funk."
Set One: Oregon 25, ASU 21
The Ducks took a 10-5 lead on a 4-0 run and Isanovic had a kill right out of the timeout to stop the run for Oregon. The Sun Devils got within one of the Ducks, 14-13, after back-to-back hitting errors by Oregon. ASU took their second timeout down 17-14, and the Sun Devils and Ducks traded points with ASU pulling within two, 23-21. The Ducks took the first set on a service ace, 25-21.
Set Two: Oregon 26, ASU 24
It was a tight one throughout the second set as there were 17 ties and nine lead changes. A 4-0 run put the Sun Devils ahead 7-4, which saw two hitting errors by the Ducks, a kill from Shields and an ace from Levinska. A 3-0 spurt for Oregon tied the set 10-10 and the teams traded points throughout the set. The Ducks had a 3-0 run to take their largest lead of the set, 21-19, but the Sun Devils tied the set off a kill and an ace from Isanovic. An ace from Larson-Nummer gave ASU the lead 23-22, but Oregon took the set in extra points off a kill.
Set Three: Oregon 25, ASU 20
The Ducks took an early 6-4 lead to start off this set and a 3-0 spurt put Oregon ahead 11-5, leading to a Sun Devil timeout. ASU pulled within one, 14-13, off an ace from Levinska, and it was back and forth from that point until consecutive kills by Oregon put them ahead 19-15. ASU brought it within two off a block from Roberta Rabelo, but the Ducks took the match on a kill, 25-20.
The Sun Devils travel next weekend to Los Angeles as they take on USC on Friday, November 4 and UCLA on Sunday, November 6. The match against USC can be viewed on the USC Live Stream and the following match against UCLA can be watched on the Pac-12 Network.