Sept. 29, 2012
ARLINGTON, Texas - A season-high 17 kills from Josselyn White and 11 kills from Shay Sorensen led the way for Utah State volleyball's 3-0 (25-14, 25-22, 27-25) sweep of UT Arlington Saturday afternoon at UTA's College Park Center in Western Athletic Conference action.
USU improves to 10-5 overall and 5-1 in WAC play, going 2-0 on the road trip after winning in four sets at Louisiana Tech Thursday night. With the loss, UT Arlington is 6-11 overall and 2-3 in WAC action. Saturday afternoon was USU's first visit to Arlington since 1990, and the Aggies' win snapped a three-match losing skid to the Mavericks, but Utah State now leads the all-time series, 8-5.
The Aggies also improved to 3-0 in the Long Horn State after winning at Texas State and UTSA earlier this month. USU has also offered a rude welcome to the new teams to the WAC so far this season, going 4-0 against league newcomers UT Arlington, UTSA, Texas State and Seattle.
Senior outside hitter White (Smithfield, Utah) pounded her 17 kills Saturday on a .429 (17-2-35) attack percentage. Fellow senior, opposite side hitter Sorensen (North Ogden, Utah), tallied her 11 kills hitting .208 (11-6-24).
Utah State hit .284 (48-17-109) for the match, as sophomore middle blocker Kaitlyn VanHoff (Draper, Utah) had a team-high .556 (6-1-9) attack percentage, while redshirt-freshman Elle Brainard (Saratoga Springs, Utah) tallied five kills to go along with a match-high five blocks.
Sophomore libero Ashlan Rogers (Highland, Utah) logged 15 digs, while freshman defensive specialist McKell Staheli (Pleasant Grove, Utah) registered 13 digs. Sophomore setter Paige Neves (Otto, Wyo.) dished out a match-best 40 assists.
UT Arlington hit .121 (33-20-107) for the match and were led by eight kills apiece by Taylor Gross and Amy Davault. Ashley Bennett had four blocks, while Valerie Stetzer tallied nine digs and Amanda Welsh dished out 29 assists.
Holding a 13-9 lead in set one, the Aggies reeled off five unanswered points behind the serving of Staheli for an 18-9 advantage. UTA pulled to 19-12 after a block, but wouldn't get any closer, as USU scored four-straight, with Sorensen logging a kill and then Brainard and White teaming up for a block in between UTA attack errors. Sorensen later logged another kill to end the set in USU's favor at 25-14.
The Mavericks took a 13-12 lead in the second stanza, but the Aggies took control of the set with a 5-0 spurt, starting by a kill by White, who then went back and served up five points, as Brainard and Sorensen teamed up for two blocks sandwiched around a Brainard kill. Brainard and sophomore outside hitter Rachel Orr (Thatcher, Ariz.) paired up for a block to cap the streak. UTA later tied it at 22-all, but couldn't take the lead as VanHoff logged a kill, then two Maverick errors ended the frame at 25-22 for the Aggies' 2-0 lead.
Utah State jumped out to a 16-10 lead in the third set after a Sorensen kill. White gave USU match point with a kill for a 24-17 lead, but the Mavericks stormed back with seven unanswered to send the set to bonus volleyball at 24-24. With the score tied at 25-25, White and Brainard pounded kills for USU's set and match victory at 27-25.
After this road trip, USU returns to the friendly confines of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum to open up a season-long five-match homestand starting with New Mexico State on Thursday, Oct. 4 at 7 p.m.
Utah State volleyball tickets are available by contacting the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum or by phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305.
USU volleyball action can be followed live on the Internet with live stats available through the "Gametracker" link at www.UtahStateAggies.com. Aggie volleyball home matches are also streamed online by clicking on the "Watch Live" link at www.UtahStateAggies.com. There is a Utah State All-Access Monthly Subscription for $9.95 and a Utah State All-Access Yearly Subscription for $79.95.
Fans can follow the Aggie volleyball program at twitter.com/USUVolleyball or on facebook at facebook.com/USUVolleyball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at facebook.com/USUAthletics.
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