By Lindsay Gaesser, SDA Media Relations
TEMPE, Ariz.—The Arizona State sand volleyball team edged out in-state rival Arizona, 3-2, and earned a point in the Territorial Cup Series on Thursday afternoon at the PERA Club.
“What an exciting day,” said ASU head coach Jason Watson. “Especially with that last match. It came down to that match for the point in the Territorial Cup. I’m just so proud of our team.”
With the win, ASU is now 5-5 on the season while Arizona is 7-11.
In the opening matches, ASU’s No. 4 seed Genevieve Pirotte and BreElle Bailey and No. 5 seed Nora Tuioti-Mariner and Andi Lowrance swept Arizona’s Allie Cook and Penina Snuka and Taylor Arizobal and Jazmine Campas, respectively, in straight sets.
No. 1 seed Bianca Arellano and Bethany Jorgensen fell to the Wildcats’ Madi Kingdon and Ronni Lewis, in three sets (15-21, 21-17, 15-11).
In the closing matches, Arizona’s Sarah Seiber and Rachel Rhoades swept ASU’s Kizzy Willey and Jordy Checkal, tying the overall score at 2-2. The match came down to the No. 2 seeds on the west court.
After losing the first set, the Sun Devils’ dynamic duo of Macey Gardner and Whitney Follette battled back to beat Wildcat twins McKenna and Madison Witt in the second set. The third set went down to the wire with a series of ties, but Gardner and Follette held on for 16-14 win, and clinched the victory for ASU.
“It was just a side out battle,” said Watson. “We got a late start, but we edged out Arizona in the end. The margins are so slim in this game—that’s what makes it fun.”
The Sun Devils have a quick turnaround and will be hitting the sand again on Friday, April 24 when they take on Boise State for their final match of the season. The match takes place at 4:00 p.m. PT at the PERA Club in Tempe, Ariz.
Arizona State 3, Arizona 2
#1 Madi Kingdon/Ronni Lewis (UA) def. Bianca Arellano/Bethany Jorgensen (ASU), 15-21, 21-17, 15-11
#2 Macey Gardner/Whitney Follette (ASU) def. McKenna Witt/Madison Witt (UA), 14-21, 21-19, 16-14
#3 Sarah Seiber/Rachel Rhoades (UA) def. Kizzy Willey/Jordy Checkal (ASU), 21-18, 22-20
#4 Genevieve Pirotte/BreElle Bailey (ASU) def. Allie Cook/Penina Snuka (UA), 21-18, 21-17
#5 Nora Tuioti-Mariner/Andi Lowrance (ASU) def. Taylor Arizobal/Jazmine Campas (UA), 21-11, 21-13
Order of Finish:
5, 4, 1, 3, 2*