The Utes lost in four sets to Arizona on Saturday at Crimson Court.
Oct. 15, 2011
SALT LAKE CITY - Four Ute players registered double-doubles but the University of Utah volleyball team lost to Arizona, 3-1 (25-18, 21-25, 16-25, 22-25), in Pac-12 Conference competition Saturday at Crimson Court.
Utah (8-12, 3-8 Pac-12) held an 11.0 to 6.0 edge in team blocks over Arizona, but was outhit by UA, .243 to .192.
"We played very well in set one and then Arizona changed the game," Utah head coach Beth Launiere said. "We blocked them a lot in set one and then they started off-speeding stuff at us and we struggled with that." The Utes were led on the attack by Morgan Odale, who posted a team-high 12 kills to go with 10 digs for her fourth double-double performance of the year and the 13th of her career. The Star, Idaho native also had a pair of blocks.
Schofield turned in a team-high 12 digs along with 10 kills for her fourth double-double of the season and Utah's 13th of the season. Schofield, a Provo, Utah native, turned in a pair of blocks as well.
Erin Redd registered her second consecutive eight-block performance with eight block assists in the match. She was also the third Ute to reach double-digits in kills as she turned in 10 on 21 attempts with only two errors for a .318 hitting efficiency. The Spanish Fork, Utah native also served a team-high two aces.
"[Redd] really had a great match tonight," Launiere said. "She is really just starting to become a really big offensive player in this conference and that's pretty exciting." Senior Jennifer Lanting added six blocks and three digs to Utah's defensive effort.
Juniors McKenzie Odale and Abby Simmons virtually split the setting duties and both turned in double-double performances. Odale distributed a team-high 19 assists to go with 10 digs. Simmons had 18 assists with a season-high 11 digs for her first double-double of 2011 and the eighth over her career.
Defensively in the back row, sophomore libero Nikki Sim was the fourth Ute to have double-digits with 11 digs. She had double-digits in digs for the fourth consecutive match and the 13th time this season.
Utah took four of the first five points in the opening set and led by as many as eight (13-5) after the Utes put together a 5-0 run. The Wildcats worked their deficit back down to three points (18-15), but Utah held off the rally and led by six (21-15) en route to a 25-18 first-set victory. Redd had five kills and five blocks in the opener to help the Utes hit .278 on the attack, while Arizona was limited to .000. The set victory was Utah's fourth straight in Pac-12 play. The Utes fell to 6-2 this season when winning the first set.
Arizona jumped out to an early 4-1 lead in the second set before a 6-2 Wildcat spurt gave them a six-point edge at 11-5. UA led by as many as seven (13-6) before took nine of the following 14 points to pull within three (18-15). Unfortunately, Utah could get no closer for the remainder of the set as Arizona held on for the 25-21 second-set win. Four different Utes had three kills apiece in the frame and Utah hit .333 as a team, but Arizona was able to go for a .429 clip in the set.
The Wildcats claimed the first six points of the third set and would lead by as many as eight (12-4). The Utes cut their deficit to five on a pair of occasions, but Arizona would go on to take the third frame, 25-16. Schofield had a team-high four kills and four digs as the Utes outblocked the Wildcats in the frame, 2.0 to 1.0.
The Utes jumped to a 5-2 advantage early in the fourth frame after going on a 5-0 tear. Utah climbed to a four-point edge (9-5) before Arizona took five of the next six points to tie the set for the second time at 10 points apiece. The set would be tied once more at 11-11 before Arizona grabbed a three-point lead at 16-13. The Wildcats would build their lead to five (20-15) and would hold on for a 25-22 match-clinching victory.
"We had our times where we went into the hole a little bit but for the most part they did some things to us that we need to get back into the gym and get better at," Launiere said. "Specifically, Arizona State started serving short and they started tipping and played a lot of off-speed at us. We blocked so many balls early on that instead of playing a power game they went to an off-speed game and we struggled with that. We need to get better at that and that showed up tonight."
Arizona (13-6, 5-5 Pac-12) received a team-high 17 kills and five digs from Courtney Karst.
The Utes travel to Los Angeles for a pair of matches next weekend, beginning Friday at USC and Saturday against UCLA. Both matches are set for 7 p.m. PT.