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WCC Women's Volleyball Recaps

Sept. 10, 2008

Washington State - 3
Gonzaga - 1

PULLMAN, Wash. - Gonzaga University women's volleyball, which won the first two sets easily against Washington State University, let the Cougars win the final three sets to earn the five-set victory at Bohler Gym in Pullman, Wash. Washington State won the crucial fifth set by a score of 15-8 on the strength of both Brittany Tillman and Cassie Robbins who had two kills apiece in the come-back set.

The loss drops the Bulldogs lead to 2-6 while the Cougars are now 4-3 on the season.

Gonzaga earned the 25-19 first set victory on the strength of both senior Elaina Renius and junior Layne Brosky. Renius had five kills on nine total attempts for a .444 hitting clip. The middle blocker also had the crucial block on the set point to give the Bulldogs the six-point victory. Brosky, the left handed right-sided hitter, gave the Cougars some trouble, finishing the first set with five kills on eight total attempts for a impressive .625 attacking percentage.

Renius set the tone in the second set, blocking Washington State's first kill attempt. Renius would go on to have two block assists in the set, along with five kills. Freshman Laura Day and sophomore Allyson Powell served up the match's first two service aces to help Gonzaga capture the set, 25-19. Brosky again was on fire for the Zags, connecting on four passes from freshman setter Denis Van de Mortel for four crucial points.

Washington State doomed itself in the second set, miss hitting on three services, along with having two reception errors and one ball handling error.

Washington State led by three early in the third set until Renius turned it on. With the Cougars leading 11-10, Renius had two kills and two blocks, including one block which gave the Bulldogs their first lead of the set at 13-12. A see-saw battle ensued until back-to-back kills by WSU gave the Cougars some breathing room at 23-21. The Bulldogs battled though, as sophomore Caitlin Cozad and Van de Mortel tag-teamed for a block to put the score at 23-22. Jackie Albright had her eighth kill of the night and Renee Bordelon closed out a long rally by both teams to give Washington State the 25-22 victory.

Gonzaga led 5-2 early in the fourth set but let Washington State take a hold of the set and gained an 11-6 advantage. The Bulldogs fought back though as Renius had a block and a kill and Brosky hammered home two kills to slice the Cougar lead to one at 14-13. GU and WSU traded points back and forth until four-straight points by Washington State put the Coug lead at 22-17.

The Bulldogs valiantly tried to overcome the deficit but the Cougars pulled out a heart pounding 28-26 win to force the fifth and deciding set.

Renius had a monster night for Gonzaga, finishing with a match and career high 22 kills along with six solo blocks and four block assists. She also had four digs in the setback. Layne Brosky added 15 kills and five digs for GU.

Van de Mortel dished out a career-high 65 assists and had a career-high 18 digs for her first career double-double.

Washington State was led by Johnson who had 18 kills, 10 digs and three solo blocks. Kelly Hyder led the Cougs defensively with 27 total digs.

Gonzaga will be back in action this Friday and Saturday when it hosts the Gonzaga Volleyball Tournament. The Bulldogs first match of the tournament will be against UTEP on Friday at 7 p.m.

Ohio State - 3
Loyola Marymount - 1

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - LMU (4-3) fell 3-1 in its home-opener against Ohio State (6-2) on Wednesday night in Gersten Pavilion. The Lions took set one by a count of 25-23 before dropping sets two through four, 25-21, 25-19 and 25-18.

Senior Emily Day paced the Lion offense, totaling a match-best 20 kills, while also recording a double-double with 15 digs. Megan Nash, who once again finished as the team's leading hitter, collected a career-high 13 kills at a .440 pace (13-for-25). Setter Renee Horton also posted a double-double on the night, teaming 34 assists with a team-best 13 digs.

Kristen Dozier guided the Buckeye offense with 15 kills, while Kaila Calhoun and Chelsea Noble finished with 14 and 12, respectively. Ashley Hughes dished-out a match-high 43 assists, while Calhoun managed a match-best 18 digs.

LMU took set one of the match, led by Day's six kills in the period. The Lions and Buckeyes were tied early at 3-3 before LMU rattled-off seven unanswered points to take an early 10-3 advantage. A Day kill pushed the Lions to 15 points before a flurry of Ohio State points cut the advantage to 17-15. Hughes notched her only kill of the set to draw the teams even tighter at 20-19 before LMU pushed the tally to set point on a Becky Stehling kill to make it 24-21. Ohio State did answer for the next two points, but eventually succumb to victory on an Emily Cheek kill for the set.

The Buckeyes responded to knot the match at one set apiece after taking set two by a score of 25-21. Dozier paced the attack in the period, posting four kills on 10 attacks. Nash picked her game up for LMU in set two, collecting six of her 13 kills at a .667 pace. This time it was Ohio State who jumped out to an early lead, claiming a 10-5 advantage on a Lion attack error. The Buckeyes maintained the five-point lead at 15-10 as Hughes recorded a kill. The lead continued to stay consistent when Noble connected for one of her two kills in the set to run the tally to 21-16. Another Nash kill put the Lions within a point at 21-20, but Ohio State posted four of the next five points, including three unanswered to close the set, capped by a Noble kill.

Ohio State once again came out swinging in set three, earning a 25-19 decision. Calhoun, Dozier and Day each posted five kills in the set. The two teams played a very even period to start, matching each other nearly point-for-point to 12-12. A Dozier kill made it 13-12 before Laura Kastein held serve for four straight points, including an ace, to guide the Buckeyes to a 17-12 lead. LMU committed an attack error shortly thereafter, leaving the set at 20-15 and forcing a timeout. Unfortunately for the Lions, the timeout did very little to slow the momentum as Ohio State took the set on another Dozier kill.

The Lions posted their highest team hitting percentage in set four with a .241 mark (10-for-29), but it proved not enough as the Buckeyes claimed the set victory and the match with the 25-18 decision. Calhoun contributed five kills, while Noble and Dozier each pitched-in four. Day finished the match strong, collecting six kills on 11 attacks for a .455 percentage. The Lions trailed virtually throughout the set, as a Stehling service ace allowed Ohio State to reach 10 points first, running the tally to 10-5. Calhoun connected at 14-9 to push the Buckeyes to the 15-point plateau just a few moments later. LMU scratched-back to 16-14 on a Noble attack error, but that would be as close as they would get the rest of the way. After Horton was called for a bad set to run the score to 20-16, Calhoun made it match-point with a kill at 23-17. The Lions fought-off one match-point, but couldn't escape a second, as Calhoun found the floor for the final time.

LMU will return to action as they host the Four Points Sheraton LAX/LMU Volleyball Classic on Friday and Saturday. That tournament will be played in Burns Recreation Center and will kick-off with UC Irvine and San Jose State at 4:30 p.m. on Friday. LMU will hit the floor for the first time on Friday night, meeting Pittsburgh at 7:00 p.m.