- #12 USC def. Arizona State 3-1 (19-25, 25-19, 25-20, 25-22)
- USC moves to 13-4 overall, 5-1 Pac 12
- Arizona State drops to 10-8 overall, 0-6 Pac 12
- Tempe, Arizona
- Attendance: 1,336
- Box Score
- VolleyMob Top 25 (Week 7)
After getting swept the night before by Arizona, the #12 USC Women of Troy stormed back from a opening-set loss in Tempe to defeat the Arizona State Sun Devils in four frames.
Offensively, USC was led by senior opposites Niki Withers, who recorded 15 kills, and Brittany Abercrombie, who equaled her career best with 18 successful attacks, hitting at a .405 clip. Senior middle Danielle Geiger added 11 kills on .471 hitting and senior setter Reni Meyer-Whalley registered her sixth double-double of the year (31 assists, 11 digs).
For the Sun Devils, junior middle Carmen Unzue had a career-high 13 kills on .571 attacking and tied a career best with six blocks. Senior middle Oluoma Okaro also notched 13 kills, while sophomore outside Ivana Jeremic and freshman outside Griere Hughes each added nine.
“I loved the way Carmen came into this match,” Arizona State head coach Sanja Tomasevic said. “She didn’t have a good week of practice and she didn’t play well last weekend, and her challenge was last night she didn’t start and she came off the bench and did well so today she got a chance to start again and she just did it all. That’s what I want from my middles.”
In set one, the combination of USC errors and four Sun Devil blocks led to a decisive 25-19 Arizona State victory. USC answered in the second with 19 kills on .333 hitting to win the frame 25-19.
USC’s hitting success continued in the third as they notched 18 more kills, including six from Abercrombie, on their way to a 25-20 win. The Sun Devils led 10-6 in the fourth, but Withers recorded seven of her 15 kills in that set alone to bring the Women of Troy back from the early deficit and claim the match.
Arizona State hosts #20 Colorado on Friday, while USC welcomes California to its home court, also on Friday.
Courtesy: Arizona State Athletics
Unzue Has Career Night; @SunDevilVB Falls to No. 15 USC in Four
TEMPE, Ariz. – The Arizona State volleyball team (10-8, 0-6 Pac-12) had another tough top-15 match-up with the No. 15 USC Trojans (13-4, 5-1 Pac-12) Saturday night in Wells Fargo Arena, battling to four sets but ultimately falling, 25-19, 19-25, 20-25, 22-25.
“I think we’re getting better. I really do,” said head coach Sanja Tomasevic. “If we go back to pre-season right now and play all those pre-season teams, we’re not losing those two matches we lost, we’re not playing any close games or anything like that. So I think we’re getting better. We’re maturing at certain positions, like now when the game is over, instead of having so many things to work on we don’t know where to start, we have two or three things to work on and get better this week. So we’ll address two or three things before we play next weekend and get better at those, but at least we got better and now we’re just going to build on that and add something else.”
Junior Carmen Unzue had a career night as a Sun Devil, recording 13 kills on .571 attacking, besting her previous career high (11) she set in Oct. 2015. She also had six blocks to tie her career high, two of which she stuffed all by herself.
“I loved the way Carmen came into this match,” Tomasevic said. “She didn’t have a good week of practice and she didn’t play well last weekend, and her challenge was last night she didn’t start and she came off the bench and did well so today she got a chance to start again and she just did it all. That’s what I want from my middles.”
Senior Oluoma Okaro added 13 kills, now with double-digit kills in 16 of 18 matches this season. Sophomore Ivana Jeremic and freshman Griere Hughes each contributed nine kills.
Freshman Shelbie Dobmeier and sophomore Nicole Peterson split time at setter, posting 20 and 22 assists, respectively. Senior Halle Harker recorded 22 digs to bring her career total to 1,749. Sophomore Courtney Leffel added 14 digs, just two shy of her career high from Sept. of this season.
For the Trojans, Brittany Abercrombie had 18 kills while Niki Withers added 15 of her own.
Up next, the Sun Devils remain in sunny Tempe to take on No. 25 Colorado and No. 17 Utah on Friday, Oct. 13 and Sunday, Oct. 15 in Wells Fargo Arena. The match against the Buffs will be at 7 p.m. PT while the Sun Devils will take on the Utes at 1 p.m. PT. Both matches will be broadcasted live on the Pac-12 Network.
Kills: Unzue (13), Okaro (13), Johnson (1, career high!)
Attack Percentage: Unzue (.571; 13K, 1E, 21A)
Digs: Harker (22), Leffel (14)
Assists: Peterson (22), Dobmeier (20)
Blocks: Unzue (6; 2BS, 4BA)
Courtesy: USC Athletics
No. 15 USC Down Devils in Four Sets
Trojan opposite hitters Brittany Abercrombie and Niki Withers had 18 and 15 kills respectively in the win over ASU
TEMPE, Ariz. – The 15th-ranked USC women’s volleyball team (13-4, 5-1 Pac-12) bounced back following a loss last night to get a four-set win (19-25, 25-19, 25-20, 25-22) over Arizona State (10-8, 0-6) at Wells Fargo Arena on Saturday, Oct. 7.
Senior opposite hitter Brittany Abercrombie powered the Trojan offense as she matched her career high with 18 kills (3e, 37att) and a .405 hitting percentage. Abercrombie added three blocks (one solo) and had three digs. Senior hitter Niki Withers reached a new season high with 15 kills (5e, 32att) and hit .312 with a block and a pair of digs. Withers had seven of her kills in the fourth set to bring the Women of Troy back from a four-point deficit and claim the match.
Senior middle blocker Danielle Geiger had her best match since joining USC this season and finished with 11 kills (3e, 17att) for a .471 hitting rate and picked up two blocks. Sophomore outside hitter Khalia Lanier collected 10 kills and had nine digs to go with a block. Sophomore opposite hitter Daley Krage finished with seven kills (2e, .208) on 24 swings and added two blocks and five digs. Senior middle blocker Jordan Dunn contributed three kills, four blocks, and four digs.
The Trojans hit .265 in the match with 67 kills (24e) on 162 attacks. Senior setter Reni Meyer-Whalley recorded her sixth double-double this season (15th career) with 31 assists and 11 digs. Sophomore setter Cindy Marina dished out 25 assists and had five digs. Defensively, junior libero Victoria Garrick had 13 digs and sophomore defensive specialist Jenna Adams had five.
For the Sun Devils, Carmen Unzue (13k, 1e, 21att, .571) and Oluoma Okaro (13k, 7e, 36att, .167) led the way with 13 kills apiece. Unzue also had a match-high six blocks. Halle Harker led all players with 22 digs.
ASU had four blocks in the first set and USC committed 11 hitting errors, three service errors, and two reception errors to end a tumultuous 25-19 decision for the Devils. The Trojans quickly turned things around and flipped the script for a 25-19 win in the second set. The Trojans earned 19 kills in the second frame and hit .333 led by Lanier and Geiger who each had five kills.
USC led from wire to wire in the third set and put up 18 more kills for a .289 hitting rate. The Trojans also had three blocks and got six big kills from Abercrombie to take a 2-1 lead in the match with a 25-20 win. Arizona State started hot in the fourth set, and led by four points at 10-6, but Withers came through with timely kills including a stretch where she had back-to-back kills and a solo block to bring USC a late lead. Despite a charge from the Devils, the Trojans held on for a 25-22 win.
Up next, the Women of Troy return to Los Angeles to host California (11-5, 2-3 Pac-12) on Friday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m. PT at Galen Center. The USC-Cal match will be streamed live on the Pac-12+ platform. The Trojans then face Stanford (12-2, 5-0) in a Sunday-afternoon matinee (Oct. 15) at 3 p.m. PT in a match that will be shown live on Pac-12 Network, Pac-12 Los Angeles, and Pac-12 Bay Area.
For more information on the USC women’s volleyball team and a complete schedule and results, please visit USCTrojans.com. Fans of the Women of Troy can follow @USCWomensVolley on Periscope, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram.
USC improved to 68-13-1 in all-time matches against Arizona State and won its fifth straight over the Sun Devils.
The Trojans improved to 54-24 all-time in matches played in the state of Arizona.
Senior S Reni Meyer-Whalley recorded her sixth double-double of the season with 31 assists and 11 digs. It is her 15th-career double-double outing.
Senior OPP Brittany Abercrombie matched her career high with 18 kills.
Senior MB Danielle Geiger had a season-high 11 kills.