Nov. 23, 2013
SAN DIEGO - Utah State volleyball concluded the road portion of its schedule with a 3-0 (25-19, 25-21, 25-18) loss to San Diego State on Saturday at Aztec Court.
USU falls to 18-11 overall and 11-7 in Mountain West Conference action, while the Aztecs improve to 15-13 and 10-8 in conference action. The Aggies have lost two-straight for the first time this season since losing a pair of matches to Duke and South Carolina way back on Sept. 13. It was also only the fourth time this season and third time in league action that Utah State has been swept. New Mexico swept the Aggies twice with Duke also winning in three.
The Aggies posted a .216 (38-14-111) attack percentage for the match, including .364 (14-2-33) in the first set. Unfortunately, the hot-swinging Aztecs hit .345 (53-13-116) for the match, including .429 (18-3-35) in the final set.
Utah State was led by junior outside hitter Rachel Orr (Thatcher, Ariz.) who had 14 kills. She was the only Aggie to hit the double-figure mark in the match. The junior ended the day with a double-double as she added 11 digs. Orr ended the match hitting .289 with only three errors on 38 swings. Senior outside hitter Tumua Etimani (Richardson, Texas) added nine kills to go along with six digs.
Junior setter Paige Neves (Otto, Wyo.) had 30 assists Saturday which gives her 3,045 for her career.
Sophomore opposite side hitter Brainard (Saratoga Springs, Utah) and junior outside hitter Orr (Thatcher, Ariz.) posted 16 kills each, while senior outside hitter Tumua Etimani (Richardson, Texas) added 12 kills and VanHoff added nine kills. Etimani notched 10 digs while Orr logged 12 digs for their 13th and 12th double-doubles, respectively, of their careers, which have all come this season.
Senior middle blocker Alyssa Everett (Perry, Utah) led Utah State with five block assists, while junior middle blocker Kaitlyn VanHoff (Draper, Utah) added four. As a team, Utah State compiled eight team blocks.
Junior libero Ashlan Rogers-Court (Highland, Utah) posted a team-leading 14 digs. She also served up one service ace, giving her 10 aces in the last four matches. She now has 36 aces this season, needing two more to break into the USU single-season top 10 service aces list.
UNLV, who hit .345 (53-13-116) for the match, was led by a trio of players with double-digit kills. Raegan Shelton led the way with 17 kills with Summer Nash adding 14. Kaja Sandberg rounded out the trio with 10 kills. Johnna Fouch led all players with 44 assists, while Christie Ring continued the strong SDSU performance with 18 digs.
The opening set was back-and-forth in the early on, before SDSU scored five-straight points to take the 13-10 lead. The Aztecs eventually opened up a six-point lead, 19-13, after an Emily Harris kill. Utah State was not able to recover from that point. The steady Aztecs would take set one 25-19.
In the second set, an Etimani kill gave USU the early 1-0 lead. Once again, the Aztecs began to pull away taking a 12-5 lead after winning four-straight points. Utah State kept fighting, getting as close as 24-21 after a kill by Orr. San Diego State closed out the set with Shelton kill to take the 2-0 advantage.
Out of the break, USU came out with a sense of urgency winning the first four points off of kills by Carly Lenzen, Neves, Orr and an Etimani service ace. San Diego State eventually re-took the lead 10-9 after a Sandberg kill. The third set remained tight until the Aztecs pulled away, taking a 18-12 lead after a USU attack error. SDSU was able to close out the set and the match 25-18 to split the season series.
USU returns home to host Air Force on Monday, Nov. 25 and Nevada on Wednesday, Nov. 27, both at 7 p.m. (MT) at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. Wednesday is USU's final match of the year and the Aggies will be honoring their two seniors, Etimani and Everett.
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.
Fans who can't make the matches can follow along with "Watch Live" and "GameTracker" links at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
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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