Sept. 20, 2001
TUCSON, Ariz.- The third-ranked Arizona volleyball team defeated Oregon, 3-1, in its Pac-10 opener in McKale Center, Thursday night. The Wildcats improved to 6-0 on the season and 1-0 in conference play, while the Ducks fell to 8-2 and 0-1 in the Pac-10. Game scores were 30-19, 30-19, 31-33, 30-18.
The Cats appeared to be on the road to their sixth straight sweep of the season with easy victories in games one and two, but the Ducks battled in the third game, snapping Arizona's streak of consecutive games won at 17. The Cats hit .400 in the opening game and didn't allow the Ducks to score more than two points in a row in the first two frames.
The third game appeared to be in hand as the Cats held a 29-26 advantage late, but the Ducks rallied. Oregon thwarted five Arizona attempts at match point and held on to win 33-31. The Cats hit a season low .130 in the game with 18 kills on 46 attempts and 12 errors.
The third-ranked Cats proved to be the better team in the fourth game as they rebounded with a .323 hitting percentage and scoring runs of six and five points. Arizona jumped out to a 10-3 lead and never led by less than three points in the match deciding game.
Arizona hit .241 for the match as a team with 60 kills on 137 attempts and 27 errors. They out-dug the Ducks 60-46 and out-blocked them 13-11. The Cats also served up a season high 12 aces.
Three Wildcats figured in double digit kills in the win. Shannon Torregrosa led all players with 17 kills, despite hitting .098 on the night. She also tied career-highs in solo blocks with three and total blocks with five. Lisa Rutledge and Erin Sebbas recorded 13 and 10 kills, respectively. Sebbas' effort matched a career high for the senior and Rutledge had 11 digs.
Jill Talbot continued her unflappable play on the right side. The senior had nine kills and no errors on 21 attempts for a match high .429 hitting percentage. She also chipped in with 12 digs, three service aces and four assists.
Setter Dana Burkholder dished out 47 assists in the win and also had six digs and kills for the Cats. Freshman defensive specialist Kelli Mulvany had eight digs and recorded a match high four service aces.
Arizona returns to action tomorrow as Oregon State comes to the Old Pueblo for a 7 p.m. match.