Tucson, Ariz. ?- The University of Arizona women’s volleyball team (10-10, 1-7 Pac-10) won the first game against Washington State, but dropped the next three to the Cougars to fall in four games on Thursday night in McKale Center. Game scores were 26-30, 30-22, 30-26, and 30-26.
Sophomore Brooke Buringrud led the Wildcats with 17 kills, and sophomore Randy Goodenough and freshman Whitney Dosty added nine kills apiece. Freshman Alanna Resch tallied a career-best seven kills with a match-high .385 hitting percentage, and senior Stephanie Butkus added a match-best 45 assists.
“We just didn’t have enough players on the sidelines,” head coach Dave Rubio said. “We didn’t perform our skills well enough to get any rhythm going. Everyone needs to be on for us to play well. Tonight we had several players not on.”
As a team, Arizona hit .055 (54-44-181) in the match compared to a .103 (46-29-165) mark by Washington State. Arizona posted 11.0 team blocks, as the Wildcats have now tallied double-digit blocks in 14 of their last 15 matches.
Arizona managed to pull out a game-one victory, 30-26, despite being out-hit by the Cougars .073 (12-9-41) to .045 (14-12-44). The Wildcats led the Cougars by two at 25-23, and scored three-consecutive points to take a five-point advantage at 28-23. UA would then need five sets to put WSU away.
The Wildcats struggled in game two, allowing the Cougars to pounce on a 30-22 win. Arizona led WSU 12-8, but the Cougars rallied with a 9-1 scoring run to take a 17-13 advantage. UA could not claw back, as the Cougars out-hit the Wildcats again, .108 (9-5-37) to -.042 (10-12-48), and closed out the second game with a 5-1 run for the victory.
Game three was all about scoring runs, and WSU got the better of the Cats with a 30-26 win. With the game notched at 4-4, Washington State went on a 12-2 scoring tear to take a commanding 16-6 lead. Arizona battled back with six-straight points which led to a 14-5 run and cut the deficit to 21-20. The Wildcats would not get any closer as WSU countered every UA rally down the stretch to win by four.
Game four was close early, with the score tied at 15-15 halfway through. Washington State would use a 9-3 run to take a 24-18 lead, but the Wildcats scratched back with a 6-0 run to notch the game at 24-24. The teams battled to a 26-26 tie before the Cougars scored four-straight points for the match-clinching victory. Although Arizona out-hit WSU .114 (15-10-44) to .071 (11-8-42) in the match, the Wildcats’ five service errors in the final game proved to be costly.
Washington State won for the first time in McKale Center since 1995.
Arizona will host No. 6-ranked and defending national champion Washington on Friday, Oct. 20 in McKale Center at 7 p.m.