Oct. 17, 2008
PULLMAN, Wash. -- The Washington State volleyball team took one set but could not hold off No. 25 Oregon State as the Beavers won 25-19, 19-25, 25-18, 25-23, Friday night before 1,023 fans at Marcia Saneholtz Court at Bohler Gym.
Oregon State, 13-6 overall, 2-4 in Pacific-10 Conference play, was led by Rachel Rourke and Jill Sawatzky who combined for 48 kills as the Beavs hit .253 for the match. Setter Camilla Ah-Hoy had 61 assists and the sole service ace. Lauren Rinderknecht had 17 digs and Ashley Evans and Natalie Hooper combined to add 27 digs. Ah-Hoy, Rourke, Lexie Rathgeber and Lauren Rinderknecht each had four blocks as OSU dominated the Cougs, 13 to 8.
WSU, now 7-11 overall and 0-7 in Pac-10 action, was led by Brittany Tillman's 12 kills as the sophomore from Tacoma hit .391 and also led the Cougs with four blocks. Jackie Albright added 11 kills and Emily Rooney had 10 kills. Renee Bordelon had 44 assists and 10 digs. Kelly Hyder led the match with 19 digs while Stephanie contributed another 11 digs. Hyder and Bree Flach landed service aces.
Oregon State extended a 14-10 lead in the opening set to a 21-15 advantage. The Beavs scored a couple of quick points on blocks from Rinderknecht and Ah-Hoy before Rooney countered with a kill. Rourke landed a kill to put the visitors at set point, 24-16. Kills from Rooney and Meagan Ganzer, and a Rourke attack that went into the net extended the Cougs's lifeline. OSU scored the final point of the set on a WSU hitting error.
WSU jumped out to an 11-7 lead in the second set and moved it to a 20-14 lead. After trading points, OSU called a timeout. Rourke's cross-court attack went outside the lines but Rinderknecht landed a kill on the next serve. WSU reached 24 points on the 10th OSU attack error of the set. Tillman hit into the net to extend the set one more point and Rinderknecht's attack on the next play also landed outside the court. Cougars score their first set win of the Pac-10 season with the 25-19 win. The Beavers had four service errors in this set after tallying three in the first set, and hit .081 as a team.
The third set opened with an OSU lead but the Cougars battled back, out-scored the Beavs five to two, for a 12-10 lead. The Beavers came back to tie the set at 14-each and then scored four consecutive points for the 18-14 advantage. But the OSU front line used tips and big blocks to stymie the Cougs and take the 25-18 win.
The fourth set stayed close until the end, with 14 ties and eight lead changes. Oregon State was up by three points and watched the lead disappear as WSU fought back and knotted the set at 18-points each. The two Northwest squads traded points five more times until back-to-back kills by Sawatzky gave Oregon State the 25-23 win.
After the match, Tillman said, "I think it's definitely a step (in the right direction) for the team. We need to figure out how to take them all the way. We're tired of taking the little steps. We need to get over the humps and get those wins."
"In the second set, where it was outside versus outside, we were having a tough time in that battle and it happened again in the fourth set, where both setters were setting the ball to the outside and we just couldn't be consistent with putting that ball down," WSU Head Coach Andrew Palileo said. "I think we have progressed well in practices. I think we are getting better and the players are understanding what it is that we want them to try to do. I'm seeing our system in play during matches a lot more but now we need to be more consistent with it and we're getting better. We've just got to apply the things that we are learning into the game situations. Once we do that I think we will start seeing more success."
Washington State is hosts No. 6 Oregon (14-4 overall, 3-3 Pac-10) Sunday, Oct. 19, in a 1 p.m. match in Pullman. No. 7 Washington defeated Oregon 3-2 Friday night in Seattle.