Sept. 12, 2007
(San Jose) - USF volleyball claimed its 11th five game victory in 12 attempts with a 3-2 victory at San Jose State Wednesday in Spartan Gym, winning 30-24, 21-30, 25-30, 30-28, 16-14. The Dons (8-3) trailed two games to one, but bounced back to take its third straight win against the Spartans (6-4) - all of them going the distance.
Senior honors candidate Kristin Hasselberg shook off a slow start to finish with a match-high 20 kills to go along with 10 digs and a pair of blocks. Junior middle blocker Carly Babin added 12 kills on .476 hitting, while junior middle blocker Alix Gombos added nine kills and seven blocks for the Dons.
Sophomore libero Haley Carroll recorded 40 digs - the second highest tally in USF single match history - averaging a remarkable 8.00 per game to go along with four service aces. Senior outside hitter Brynn Maurer added nine kills and 13 digs, narrowly missing her second double-double of the season.
USF struggled at times offensively, but battled back repeatedly against a determined Spartan squad playing in their home opener. The Dons hit .172 for the match with 73 kills and turned in a season match-high with 90 digs.
San Francisco roared out to a 18-7 lead in game one with Darcy Carroll serving seven consecutive points. The Spartans sprinted back, going on a 14-6 run to close to 24-21, forcing a Dons timeout, but San Francisco recovered. Babin, Hasselberg, Gombos and Maurer tallied four kills apiece for USF in the opening frame. The Dons hit .163 with 19 kills and limited the Spartans to a .067 mark.
USF dug a deep hole early in game two, trailing 7-2. After closing the gap to one at 11-10, the Spartans went on a 7-1 run, seizing a 18-11 edge and evened the match at 1-1. The Dons hit .123 with 15 kills and 10 attack errors, while San Jose State attacked at a .306 clip with 14 kills and just three errors in 36 attempts.
After the intermission, the Dons jumped out to an early lead at 6-3 before the Spartans seized control with a 13-4 run to take a 16-10 lead it would not relinquish. San Francisco closed the gap to three at 25-22, but unraveled offensively as they closed the match giving up two attack and two service errors as SJSU took a 2-1 lead in the match.
With their backs against the wall, San Francisco forced game five by reducing it mistakes. USF hit .220 with 14 kills and just five errors.
USF returns to action when it hosts its second tournament of the year - the 2007 Asics/Coca-Cola Invitational - beginning Friday, September 14. The Dons take on perennial NCAA Tournament participant Sacramento State at 7:00 PM at War Memorial Gym. Match one features No. 14 Cal Poly against Xavier at 5:00 PM.