Aug. 31, 2012
TWITTER UPDATES | GAMETRACKER Vs LMU
IRVINE, Calif. - Freshman standout Macey Gardner tallied a team-best 28 kills en route to Arizona State volleyball's 3-2 win against UC Irvine (25-21, 23-25, 25-13, 18-25, 15-11). The Sun Devils then swept Colgate 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-9) in the second match on Friday at the Bren Events Center.
The Sun Devils (5-0) will continue play at 3 p.m. Saturday at Loyola Marymount (3-1, at time of release) as part of the UC Irvine/Loyola Marymount Dual Classic. This is the first time ASU has started 5-0 since 1997.
Despite trading sets in game one against UCI, the Sun Devils managed its second five-set win of the season behind double-doubles by Macey Gardner (28 kills, 16 digs), Allison Palmer (59 assists, 17 digs) and double-digit kills from Erica Wilson (18) and Nora Tuioti-Mariner (10). UC Irvine drops to 1-3 on the season with the loss.
Game two's leader defensively was Stephanie Preach, who posted 18 digs in the outing. Mercedes Binns made her first career start and finished with three block assists and seven kills. Offensively, ASU hit .448 in the second set and .432 in the third which was aided by Gardner's 18 kills (.484 pct), Wilson's 14 and Nora Tuioti-Mariner's serving streak in the third set.
GAME TWO: Arizona State 3, Colgate 0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-9)
Set one saw the Sun Devils go ahead 6-4, but the lead would be brief as ASU miscues kept Colgate within two at the halfway point, 12-10. A Raider timeout at 19-13 gave only momentary relief, with Gardner racking up three kills behind Tuioti-Mariner's serve, 24-15. ASU put the set in the books at 25-18, tallying 15 kills to Colgate's six.
The score teeter-tottered in set two, the lead exchanging sides five times before the 9-8 mark. ASU then built a five-point cushion at 15-10, only to see the Raiders storm back within one 18-17.
ASU opened its most convincing set of the season, controlling the third 5-0 at the start. Tuioti-Mariner held her serve for an unprecedented nine-straight points with six kills from Gardner in that time frame to roll ahead 20-5. As a team, the maroon and gold hit at a .432 attack percentage on its way to cap the set 25-9 and the set, 3-0. The win marked the second sweep of the season thus far - first coming against Fresno State, Aug. 25.
Arizona State 3, UC Irvine 2 (25-21, 23-25, 25-13, 18-25, 15-11)
Arizona State would be in control for the first set, jumping out to a 12-9 lead. The Sun Devils would lead by as many as six at 17-11, with the help of a trio of kills from Macey Gardner. Despite the absence of blocks in the frame, a .259 attack percentage carried the maroon and gold to a 25-21 set win.
The Sun Devils kept pace with the Anteaters in the second set, trailing in the beginning until gaining momentum, 11-9. After UCI tied it at 17-17, ASU found breathing room by climbing to a 21-17 lead to force a timeout.
UC Irvine then went on a seven-point run to not only close the gap but take a 21-24 lead. ASU dropped the set 23-25 to tie the game at 1-1 heading into the break.
In the third set, three straight points from Wilson lifted ASU to a 6-2 advantage. In the heart of the match, a pair of kills from Gardner, followed by an ace from Nora Tuioti-Mariner led the Sun Devils to a 15-8 lead.
Not letting up, a lead of 10 was highlighted by an ace from Allison Palmer, 21-11. Palmer would go on to finish the match with 59 assists, a high for both teams. In the final points, Tuioti-Mariner and Alexis Pinson delivered a block assist, Wilson followed with an ace and Tuioti-Mariner closed it out with a kill, to take the stanza 25-13.
The teams traded points to open the fourth set, but it was 7-12 when UCI rallied for four straight points. The Sun Devils worked from behind the entire set, cutting the Anteater lead to two, 11-13, after a block solo from freshman Whitney Follette. Combining for only 10 kills in the set, ASU fell 18-25 to even the match at 2-2.
The fifth set saw three ties before UCI put the Sun Devils behind at 4-5. After a timeout by Watson at the 6-9 mark, the ASU offense got a kick start and rallied behind kills from Tuioti-Mariner, Pinson and Gardner to make it 9-10.
Behind the serve of Stephanie Preach, who held for five points, ASU went up 13-10. Tuioti-Mariner and Follette closed the match with back-to-back kills, ASU taking the match 15-11.
The Sun Devils will travel to Los Angeles to face off against Loyola Marymount, with a 3 p.m. start time on Saturday to wrap up the tournament.