Oct. 19, 2013
RENO, Nev. - A double-double from junior outside hitter Rachel Orr boosted Utah State volleyball to a 3-0 (25-23, 25-19, 25-13) sweep over Nevada Saturday afternoon at Nevada's Virginia Street Gym.
The win was the third in a row for the Aggies and seventh in their last 10 matches, improving to 12-7 overall and 5-3 in Mountain West Conference play. Nevada suffered its 10th-straight loss in falling to 2-19 overall and 0-8 in MW action.
Saturday was USU's second win at Reno in as many tries, as well as the Aggies' fifth-consecutive victory over the Wolf Pack and 10th in the last 12 meetings, closing Nevada's lead in the all-time series to 20-16.
"It's nice to get out of there with a win. I've gone there a bunch of times and not come out on the winning end. It was nice to be able to have our team perform really well and it was nice to be able to get some kids in, being able to get Jamaica Alisa and Carly Lenzen in, and get them some experience. It was a good trip for us," USU head coach Grayson DuBose said.
Orr (Thatcher, Ariz.), notched her eighth double-double of the season and her career with a team-highs of 11 kills and 10 digs. She is now tied for the team-lead in double-doubles with senior outside hitter Tumua Etimani (Richardson, Texas) who tallied eight kills Saturday afternoon, while sophomore opposite side hitter Elle Brainard (Saratoga Springs, Utah) and junior middle blocker Kaitlyn VanHoff posted six kills apiece.
Senior middle blocker Alyssa Everett (Perry, Utah) posted a match-best .556 (5-0-9) attack percentage, while Orr hit .444 (11-3-18) and VanHoff logged a .417 (6-1-12), as all six players with a kill hit .136 or better, helping USU to a .318 (39-11-88) attack percentage. USU hit over .300 for the second-straight match and the Aggies are now 6-0 when hitting over .300.
"The thing I was really pleased today with was our distribution. We're getting Alyssa some nice swings, Kaitlyn some nice swings, and I'm really happy with how we were able to distribute the ball around to all our hitters," DuBose said.
Doing most of the distribution was junior setter Paige Neves (Otto, Wyo.) who tallied 29 assists. Neves now has 2,631 career assists, moving up to No. 5 on USU's career assists list, passing Stephanie Maurer (1984-87) with 2,618.
Defensively, USU was led by VanHoff with four blocks, while Everett tallied two blocks and Etimani, Orr and Brainard logged two apiece, helping USU to seven total team blocks.
VanHoff's four block assists give her 338 for her career, moving up to No. 3 on USU's career block assists list, passing Amanda Nielson (2004-07) with 337 block assists. VanHoff also closed in on the No. 3 spot on the career total blocks list with 356, needing three more to catch Nielson at 359.
With six digs Saturday, junior libero Ashlan Rogers-Court now has 982 career digs, climbing up to No. 5 on the Aggies' career digs list, passing Heather Olmstead (1998-01) with 981 digs.
Nevada was led by match-highs of 13 kills by Sam Willoughby and Kara Kasser with 13 digs, while Lyndsey Anderson posted 25 assists and Tessa Lea'ea logged four blocks. The Wolf Pack hit .118 (33-22-93) as a team and tallied eight total team blocks.
Nevada jumped out to an 8-3 lead, but the Aggies closed to 9-7 after a Wolf Pack service error. Back-to-back blocks by USU, first by Etimani and VanHoff, then by Brainard and VanHoff, and Aggies tied it up at 12-12, forcing Nevada to call timeout. Later, a kill by Orr gave USU its first lead of the set at 16-15, and a Rogers-Court ace later put the Aggies ahead, 20-18, forcing the Wolf Pack to call another timeout. USU led 24-20 after an Orr kill, but Nevada closed to 24-23 before another Orr kill sealed the set at 25-23.
Aggies went up, 9-4, in early going of second set after a VanHoff kill. An ace by Neves made it a 12-6 Aggie advantage. USU had a 16-9 lead after a Nevada attack error, but the Wolf Pack clawed back to 16-13 and USU called a timeout. The Aggies pulled away and Brainard posted a kill for 21-17 lead and Etimani later notched a kill to give USU the set two win at 25-19.
Back-to-back kills by Orr gave USU a 13-7 lead in the third set, and Nevada tried to slow the spurt with a timeout, but to no avail, as a Brainard kill made it 20-9. An ace by freshman defensive specialist Hannah Gleason (Los Flores, Calif.) squeezed in between a pair of Nevada errors clinched the set and the match at 25-13 in the Aggies' favor.
The Aggies then return home to host San Diego State on Thursday, Oct. 24 and UNLV on Saturday, Oct. 26. Both matches start at 7 p.m.
"We hope to see all of our great fans out next weekend," DuBose said.
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.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the Utah State volleyball team wants to help by raising money for Logan Regional Hospital Foundations's Breast Cancer Services. Pledges are now being gathered for every dig the Aggies make during their six home matches in October as part of USU's "Dig for a Cure" campaign.
For each dig (a defensive move made to control a spiked ball) the Aggies are asking for a donation of $0.25. If the Aggies record 200 total digs in the six matches, a pledge of $0.25 will result in $50. Half of this donation will go to the Logan Regional Hospital Foundation to assist in Breast Cancer Services while the other half will be used to support the USU Volleyball team. Pledges can be made in any amount and flat donations are also accepted and appreciated. Pledge and donation forms will be available at the matches at the marketing/promotions table on the west concourse of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
Any pledge or donation received will enter the fan's name into a drawing which will take place the last home match in October, on Thursday, Oct. 31 vs. Wyoming. Prizes include: T-shirts, volleyballs and team photos. Come cheer on the Aggies during their October matches and keep track of their digs to help them "Dig for a Cure." For more information or to donate, contact USU Assistant Coach Taubi Neves at firstname.lastname@example.org or 435-797-2063, or go to: http://bit.ly/RtaUKK.
Fans can also follow the Aggie volleyball program on twitter at twitter.com/USUVolleyball, on facebook at facebook.com/USUVolleyball, or on Instagram at instagram.com/USUVolleyball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics, on facebook at facebook.com/USUAthletics, or on Instagram at instagram.com/USUAthletics.
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