Sept. 5, 2009
OREM, Utah -- The Washington State volleyball team won the Utah Valley La Quinta Inn & Suites Invitational with a 25-22, 25-23, 25-22 sweep of Utah Valley University Saturday night in the Shurian Family Activity Center. WSU swept all three teams in the tournament to move to a 6-0 record.
Four Cougars were named to the all-tournament team: freshman Rachel Todorovich (Walla Walla), junior Brittany Tillman (Lakewood), libero of the tourney was freshman Oceana Bush (Spokane), and the MVP was senior setter Renee Bordelon (Coeur d'Alene).
In the win over Utah Valley, Todorovich led the Cougars with 12 kills, hit .407, had seven digs and two blocks. Jackie Albright had nine kills and the team-high 13 digs. Tillman added nine kills and hit .389. Bordelon had 42 assists, and ace and nine digs. Bush added 12 digs and Cassie Robbins ahd eight kills, hit .316 and a pair of blocks.
Utah Valley (4-2) took second place in the tournament with a 2-1 record. Kayli Broadbent and Camie Manwill combined for 22 kills with Manwill adding 18 digs. Allyce Jones had a match-high 23 digs. Setter Chelsea Fa'alogo had 26 assists and Dani Robinson had a match-high three blocks.
WSU hit .228 and Utah Valley hit .203 with the Wolverines out-blocking the Cougars seven to 3.5.
Cougar Head Coach Andrew Palileo expected a defensive battle with Utah Valley. "If you look at both team's digs totals, we had 64 and they had 65, and I also expected the hitting percentage to go down. Good defensive teams battling it out will lower the team hitting percentage. We won three different ways today. In the first set we came out struggling a little bit and hung in there and pulled away in the end. The second set we were way ahead and we let them back in but we were able to keep our composure and pull it off. Then in the third set, we had it under control for the most part. I am really excited for the players and what they were able to accomplish this weekend. Congratulations to them."
There were 12 ties in the first set and four lead changes with WSU leading by five points early and again later in the set. Albright had five kills with Todorovich and Robbins each adding four more kills. WSU hit .268 in this set and held Utah Valley to .171 for the 25-22 win.
The Cougars scored six consecutive points in the second set to take a commanding 21-14 lead but UVU came back to close the gap to one point, 23-22. After a WSU timeout, the Wolverines forced WSU to hit into the net to tie the set. Broadbent's attack went wide to give the Cougars set point at 24. Albright's uncontested tip gave WSU the final point and the 25-23 win.
WSU had a narrow lead through most of the third set with Utah Valley closing the gap to one point, down 21-20. Tillman and Broadbent traded kills and points twice before Bordelon took control of the set with a kill and an ace to give the Cougars the 25-22 win and the match.
The Cougars will play Weber State in a Labor Day afternoon match in Ogden, before returning to Pullman to host the Nike Cougar Challenge Tournament with Idaho and Cal State Northridge.