Oct. 13, 2005
PULLMAN, Wash. -- The No. 17-ranked USC volleyball team swept Washington State University 30-14, 30-18, 30-14, as the Cougars played without their leading hitter, Jen Barcus, Thursday night at Bohler Gym on the WSU campus.
Barcus, a junior middle blocker, is out with a viral infection diagnosed Tuesday night and her return to the team is to be determined. Stepping into her starting spot against USC was Cougar freshman Kelly Russell who contributed a match-high six blocks.
"I was really pleased with Kelly Russell's performance tonight," WSU Head Coach Brian Heffernan said. "She did a great job of getting her hands over the net and really closing the block. It earns her more time on the court in the future. Whoever that is for, I don't know."
The Women of Troy, now 8-6 overall, 4-2 in Pac-10 play, were led by the 17 kills of 6-3 senior Staci Venski, who had only one error in 28 attacks for a .571 hitting percentage. Bibiana Candelas, a 6-5 senior, added 14 kills and a team-high five blocks. Setter Nena Siljegovic had 40 assists and a pair of aces. Debora Seilhamer, the conference digs leader, had a match-high 18 digs.
Kelly Rosin led WSU with 10 kills as the Cougars struggled to a .050 hitting percentage for the match. Jalen Pendon added 13 digs and Maureen Perez set the match and had 19 assists. Brittany Johnson had five kills and four blocks.
"The team did not `play the jersey' tonight, they just came out and just wanted to play," Heffernan said of his young squad. "In game one alone, we made 15 errors that cost us points and when you're giving 15 points to a team like USC you are fighting an uphill battle. But that is youthfulness right there. Freshmen Brittany Johnson, Jalen Pendon and Kelly Russell were just bringing all they had to the floor tonight. We're the underdogs and we have to go out and just play our guts out."
Friday night at Bohler Gym, Washington State hosts No. 22 UCLA (9-6, 2-4), 0-3 losers at No. 2 Washington Thursday night at Seattle.
No. 17 USC (8-6, 4-2) def. Washington State (8-11, 1-4) 30-14, 30-18, 30-14 KILLS - WSU 25 (Rosin 10), USC 51 (Venski 17) HITTING PERCENTAGE - WSU .050, USC .402 ASSISTS - WSU 24 (Perez 19), USC 50 (Siljegovic 40) DIGS - WSU 34 (Pendon 13), USC 53 (Seilhamer 18) BLOCKS - WSU 7.5 (Russell 6), USC 8 (Candelas 5) SERVICE ACES - WSU 1 (Weishaar), USC 6 (Siljegovic 2) Attendance: 536.