No. 17 Cougar Volleyball Upsets No. 1 Stanford, 3-1
PULLMAN, Wash. -- The No. 17 Washington State University volleyball team defeated top-ranked Stanford 31-29, 30-24, 23-30, 30-26, in Pacific-10 volleyball Saturday night. The match was played in front of WSU season-high and remodeled Bohler Gym record attendance of 2,539.
With the victory, Washington State moved to 19-7 overall, 9-7 in Pac-10 Conference play while Stanford fell to 25-4, 14-3.
The win was the first in school history for the Cougar volleyball program over a number one-ranked team. It was also the second time in the careers of the five WSU seniors playing their final home match that the Cougars knocked off the Cardinal. The last time was a 3-1 win in 2001.
Senior LaToya Harris recorded a double-double with a career and match-high 29 kills and 18 digs. Harris hit a season-high .460 for the match (six errors, 50 attempts). In addition, the Portland, Ore., native tallied three service aces to establish a WSU career record with 136.
Fellow senior Kortney Jamtaas registered a school-record 34 digs from the libero position. Adrian Hankoff was the only other Cougar player in double-digits with 13 kills. Victoria Prince added five blocks while setter Brenn Larson had 60 assists and three blocks.
Stanford was led by the 25 kills of Ogonna Nnamani while three-time All-American Logan Tom had 19 kills and 21 digs. Anna Robinson and Sara McGee had six blocks each.
WSU hit .226 for the match and held Stanford to .183.
"These seniors have provided four really great years," Cougar Head Coach Cindy Fredrick said. "They've been a really tight group and they've worked really hard together. For them to go out this way, it really couldn't have been more perfect. Its like the magical ending of their college careers."
"It's like a fairy tale that's real," Jamtaas said. "There was an underlying theme (for the seniors). We knew it was our last game (at home) and we wanted to go out with no regrets. Basically, we just wanted to play a good game and I think we got more than that tonight."
In game one, the Cougars raced to an 8-1 lead with Harris contributing two kills a block solo. Stanford battled back to tie the game twice and eventually took a 29-28 lead on a block solo by Logan Tom.
However, the Cougars tied the game on a kill by sophomore Victoria Prince before attack errors by the Cardinal's Sara McGee and Tom gave WSU the 31-29 win.
In the first half of game two, Harris was on fire as the southpaw earned the Cougars' first five points with four kills and an ace. Three more Harris kills during a 5-1 run gave WSU a 15-10 advantage.
The teams traded points until kills by Stanford's Ogonna Nnamani and Tom sandwiched around an Adrian Hankoff attack error cut the Cardinal deficit to 18-16.
A kill by Hankoff, a block by Prince and senior Chelsie Schafer, and an attack error by Stanford increased the Cougars' advantage to 21-16. From there the two teams again played even until Harris closed the match with a kill for the 30-24 win.
Game three saw Stanford use a 5-0 run to jump out to a 6-2 lead. WSU aided the run with three hitting errors. Twice the Cougars closed to within two, but a 9-2 run put Stanford up 17-9 and the Cardinal cruised to the 30-23 victory.
In game four, the Cardinal recorded a 7-1 run to take what seemed to be an insurmountable 19-12 advantage. However, the Cougars showed their grit by scoring 10 of the next 12 points to take a 22-21 lead.
A kill by freshman Ance Auzina and a pair of attack errors by Tom brought the Cougars to within 19-15. After a Harris kill, Tom stopped the momentum with a kill and a block to give Stanford a 21-16 lead.
The Cougars rallied for the next six points on kills by Schafer, Harris and Prince, an attack error by Tom and pair of block assists from Prince and Schafer.
The teams traded three points until a Schafer attack errors gave the lead back to Stanford at 25-24. The Cougars were resilient once again as they closed the match with a 6-1 run.
Senior Holly Harris started the rally with a kill to tie the game at 25. A dig by Jamtaas found its way over the net and down on the Stanford side for a 26-25 WSU lead. Freshman Brenn Larson, who posted 60 assists, followed with a kill and then combined with Holly Harris for a block to push the advantage to 28-25.
McGee brought Stanford back to within 28-26 with a kill. The match ended with back-to-back Cardinal miscues as McGee and Nnamani misfired on back-to-back kill attempts to end the match.
"The coaches have been asking me all season to `dump' (when the setter turns around and hits the ball over the net rather than pushing it in the air for another hitter) and even if it doesn't go down it still works because it keeps the defense on the other side honest," Larson said. "The can't move out to their place positions, they have to stay there and wait. I don't know what I was thinking when I hit for point 28. I went up and saw Harvey who is about 6-4 and all I saw was hands in my face but I happened to go around her. Its hard to defend."
Washington State will end the regular season with matches at Oregon, Nov. 21 and at Oregon State, Nov. 22.
No. 17 Washington State (19-7, 9-7) 31 30 23 30 No. 1 Stanford (25-4, 14-3) 29 24 30 26 STATISTICS: KILLS - WSU 73 (L. Harris 29), Stan 64 (Nnamani 25) HITTING PERCENTAGE - WSU .226, Stan .183 ASSISTS - WSU 67 (Larson 60), Stan 63 (Robinson 61) DIGS - WSU 84 (Jamtaas 34), Stan 73 (Tom 21) BLOCKS - WSU 10 (Prince 5), Stan 12 (Robinson, McGee 6 each) SERVICE ACES - WSU 3 (L. Harris 3), Stan 7 (Yamasaki, Tom 2 each) Attendance: 2,539 (remodeled Bohler Gym record).
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