TOURNAMENT CENTRAL | Stats vs. COC
LAWRENCE, Kan. - Friday saw the Arizona State volleyball team drop its first matches of the season, 3-2, to Wyoming in the morning session of the Jayhawk Invitational. The Sun Devils (6-2) then fell to tournament-host Kansas (8-1) in the nightcap, 3-1 (25-20, 19-25, 24-26, 23-25).
In a game of the unbeatens, Arizona State volleyball garnered its first loss of the season at the hands of Wyoming, 3-2 (23-25, 25-18, 25-18, 24-26, 11-15). Game highlights included three players with double-digit kills in Erica Wilson (17), Macey Gardner (24) and Nora Tuioti-Mariner (15). Gardner recorded her fourth double-double of the year (24 kills, 18 digs) and Allison Palmer recorded her third double-double of the year (58 assists, 10 digs). Defensively, Stephanie Preach led with 20 digs and Jenny Teslevich was close behind with 18.
Friday's second match pitted ASU against Kansas, who entered the contest sporting a 7-1 record after sweeping the College of Charleston 3-0 earlier in the day. Arizona State took the first frame 25-20, but dropped the next two 19-25 and 24-26. The fourth set stayed tight throughout with 15 ties and eight lead changes before ASU fell 23-25 and took the loss, 3-1. Wilson and Gardner each had 19 kills, Tuioti-Mariner added in 10 of her own but the team hit at just a .196 clip to the Jayhawks' .259.
MATCH TWO: ASU 1, KANSAS 3 (25-20, 19-25, 24-26, 23-25)
The Sun Devils jumped on a 12-8 lead in the first set, after the squad delivered nine kills and a service ace from Follette to frustrate the Jayhawks into a timeout. Gardner started a 7-4 run as three-straight kills from the freshman made it 17-13 under Tuioti-Mariner's serve and led to a 22-17 cushion. The Maroon and Gold finished the set 25-20 after swinging at a .286 clip.
ASU worked from behind in the second stanza, tying it four times before kills from Alexis Pinson and Wilson gave the Sun Devils a 9-6 edge. The Jayhawks closed the gap and tied it at 13-all before an unanswered five-point run put KU ahead 19-17. Two timeouts by ASU within six points could not shake the Jayhawk lead, as KU ran away with the set 25-19.
Coming out of the break, Arizona State dragged in a 4-9 start to the third set. Kansas remained in control until a timeout by ASU at 9-14 aided the Sun Devils en route to taking a 15-14 lead. After six ties, the Sun Devils tied it again at 24-all via a block assist by Gardner and Follette, but the Jayhawks squeaked out with the set, 24-26, and the lead 2-1.
In the fourth, Pinson's attack put ASU on top 7-5 and Wilson's kill points later stretched the lead to 9-6. A nip and tuck affair occurred in the heart of the match and after five ties and three lead changes, KU pulled ahead 17-19. A block assist by Mercedes Binns and Palmer tied it at 21-all and a kill by Wilson rallied the Devils to a 22-21 lead. ASU tied it once more, 23-23, but it was not enough - the Sun Devils took the set loss 23-25 and a 3-1 loss for the match.
MATCH ONE: ASU 2, WYOMING 3 (23-25, 25-18, 25-18, 24-26, 11-15)
After dropping the first set 23-25, Arizona State went on to win the next two frames 25-18, 25-18 before falling in the fourth 24-26. Wyoming improves to 9-0 after winning the fifth set 15-11 to take the match 3-2.
Despite falling behind in the opening points, timely kills from Wilson kept ASU in step with Wyoming, 11-12. Trailing later 17-20, quick kills from Wilson and Alexis Pinson made it 20-21 to force Wyoming into a timeout.
It was 23-23 following additional timeouts from both benches and a hammer of a kill by Gardner. The Cowgirls came out on top though, 23-25, after a long rally for set point. ASU led the frame with 16 kills to Wyoming's 11, but UW hit at a .257 clip and used 3.5 blocks to take the 1-0 lead.
In the second set, the Devils opened with its largest lead yet, 6-2, using kills from Whitney Follette and a pair of block assists. Wyoming chased down the lead, closing in on ASU, 13-12. After a tie at 14-all, Tuioti-Mariner and Gardner answered offensively to push ASU ahead, 17-14 and force the Cowgirls into a timeout.
Within a five-point span Wyoming burned both of its timeouts as ASU rolled ahead with a 20-16 advantage. Tuioti-Mariner and Gardner tag-teamed the final seven points, 25-18, with the duo tallying four and five kills each during the set, respectively.
Using momentum from winning the second stanza, Arizona State busted open the third, 13-8, behind the serve of Palmer. ASU climbed to a 20-14 lead, but the breathing room was cut short after Wyoming closed in at 21-18 on a 4-1 point run. That was as close as it would get though - ASU took the final four points out of a Sun Devil timeout to take the lead 2-1 with a set score of 25-18.
The teams exchanged eight ties to open the fourth set before the Sun Devils took advantage of a Wyoming timeout to go ahead 19-15. Keeping things close, UW rallied within one, 20-19, before taking the lead and forcing ASU into its second timeout at 22-23.
A flat start in the fifth set, 0-4, hurt the Sun Devils who were unable to overcome the deficit, later trailing 3-9. ASU eventually fell 11-15 in the final set to drop its first match of the year, 3-2.
Sat. Sept. 8 | 10 a.m. PT vs. College of Charleston | GameTracker
ASU closes out its road tournament schedule on Saturday at 10 a.m. PT against the College of Charleston.