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Wildcats Sweep Past Sun Devils in Straight Sets
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 10/01/2010
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Oct. 1, 2010

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TUCSON, Ariz. - Senior Paige Weber recorded 38 assists and Courtney Karst added a season-high 12 kills as the Arizona Volleyball program swept Arizona State 3-0 Friday evening before 2,234 fans at McKale Center.  Set scores were: 26-24, 25-19 and 25-12.

UA, coming off a couple of tough losses and a whirlwind week of practice, put the duress behind them vs. the rival Sun Devils, hitting .298 over the three sets while facilitating the offense efficiently. Four Wildcats tallied nine or more kills, led by Karst's 12. Cursty Jackson led the blocking effort with one solo and four block assists.

The win was Arizona's first notch in the win column in conference play in addition to bumping its overall tally to 11-4 at the half way point of the season.  Arizona State remains winless in the Pac-10 and falls to 5-10 overall.

"It's always nice to have a win. It feels good. It's a relief. When we lose, it's painful, agonizing," said head coach David Rubio.  "As a coach, to get the win is mostly a relief. We had a pretty tough week with injuries, but I'm proud of how we responded. With the exception of serving, we played a very complete match."

The match, which was broadcasted by Fox Sports Net, will first air tomorrow night at 11 p.m. MST on Fox Sports Arizona.  Check Fox Sports local listings in your area to see additional air times.

The first set of play began rough as both teams accounted for nine service errors.  Eventually the Wildcats figured it out and ran off to a seven point lead at 18-11.  ASU rallied back however and tied the score at 18, prompting an Arizona timeout.  After the huddle, UA received kills from Tiffany Owens, Whitney Dosty and Jackson to take the set 26-24

In set two, the Cats used a 5-0 run midway through the set to establish an insurmountable lead over the Devils, winning the game 25-19 on a kill from Maddie Lozano by way of an assist from Weber.  Owens led UA in the scoring department in the second set with five kills and one assist.

Moving into set three, the Cats seemed to get stronger as the much wore on, limiting ASU to just 12 total points while recording a hitting percentage of .440 to win the set 25-12 and match 3-0. 

"Closing out games is what we're taught to do, and it's always something we work on in practice, said Weber. "We weren't really talked to about it, but we did focus on it this week. It always nice to come out up two to nothing and put the game away, and doing it tonight is a step in the right direction for us."

The 3-0 shutout is the second consecutive sweep of Arizona State and third straight win over the not-so-friendly neighbors to the north.  Arizona also takes the advantage in the Territorial Cup standings, needing only to win in Tempe next month to earn the department's first point.  ASU can now hope for just a ½ point split in the standings.

Sunday, Arizona will travel to Las Cruces, N.M. to take on New Mexico State at 5 p.m.  Earlier this season, the Wildcats bested the Aggies, 3-0.

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