Oregon State Shows Valiant Effort in Loss at Stanford
STANFORD, Calif. – The Beaver volleyball team fought No. 6 Stanford for four sets (25-23, 26-28, 25-11, 25-14) on Wednesday evening at Maples Pavilion eventually falling short to the Cardinal.
For the 13th time in Pac-12 action, Mychael Vernon led the Beavers (7-20, 2-17 Pac-12) in kills with 13 on the night. Freshmen Kinley Swan (11) and Kateryna Tkachenko (10) joined Vernon in double figures on the offensive end.
Defensively, Inna Balyko finished with six blocks, while Swan was right behind her with five stuffs at the net. Izzi Szulczewski led the efforts on the back row with 14 digs and was joined by libero Ryan White in double figures with 12 digs.
The Beavs jumped out to a quick 5-3 edge behind a trio of kills from Vernon. Stanford (22-4, 18-1 Pac-12) answered with a 7-0 run to grab a 10-5 lead, but the Beavs took advantage of a flurry of Cardinal errors during a 5-1 push to cut the lead back to one at 11-10. Off a block by Vernon, Oregon State erased the five-point deficit to tie the match at 15 all and took the lead on Vernon's sixth kill of the set at 17-16. On the sixth lead change of the opening frame, the Beavs regained a 23-22 lead with a Stanford service error. However, the Cardinal closed on a 3-0 push to take the first set, 25-23.
After Stanford grabbed an early 9-5 upper hand, OSU answered with their biggest run of the season, rattling off nine-straight points to hold a 14-9 edge and force the Cardinal into their final timeout of the set. Using a pair of 3-0 pushes, the Cardinal fought back to tie the set at 17 a side. The Oregon State blocked proved large again, as Kinley Swan got her hands on the Stanford attack to put the Beavs back ahead by three at 23-20. Back-to-back aces from Kelly Belardi drew the Cardinal even at 23-23. Facing a 2-0 deficit in the match, OSU fought off a pair of set points, once again going to Vernon. The Ossining, N.Y. native grabbed a pair of kills on a 3-0 run to end the set and even the match with a 28-26 victory in the second set.
Battling back-and-forth for two sets that saw little separation between the two teams, Stanford overpowered the Beavs in the third set, behind a .469 attacking percentage. The Cardinal held OSU to just seven kills off 16 digs in the set to go up 2-1 in the match, after a 25-11 win in the third stanza.
Trading the first 10 points of the fourth set, Stanford forced the Orange and Black into a timeout off a 5-1 dash swaying the set in favor of the Cardinal. A final 5-0 run by Stanford sealed the match, as the Cardinal took the final set, 25-14.
Oregon State concludes the 2022 season on Friday at No. 10 Oregon. First serve from Eugene is set for 6 p.m. on Pac-12 Oregon.
Oregon State Athletics strives to Build Excellent Authentic Visionary Student-Athletes (Go BEAVS).