Volleyball sweeps California, prepares for No. 2 Stanford

The Golden Bears never held the lead in the last two sets



Then-sophomore Ashley Brown sets up junior middle blocker Ella Lajos for the swing kill against University of California, Berkeley Nov. 11, 2017 at Bohler Gym.

RYAN MOSHER, Evergreen reporter

WSU volleyball defeated University of California, Berkeley (13-14, 4-12) in three sets Friday night. This match marks the Cougars’ fourth conference victory and first sweep in Pac-12 play this season.

“It was a great team effort,” WSU Head Coach Jen Greeny said, according to WSU Athletic Communications. “I was really impressed with our serving, and we were able to get them out of system a lot.”

Cougar volleyball (15-12, 4-11) scored the final two points to take the first set 25-23 amidst a loud WSU pep band and cheers from the student section. WSU won the last two sets by scores of 25-21 and 25-15. The Golden Bears (13-14, 4-12) never held a lead in the last two sets.

“Eventually got our block going a little bit better,” Greeny said, “but most of all, I was happy to see our offense a lot better than it has been lately.”

Redshirt sophomore middle blocker Jocelyn Urias served a career-high four aces in the match. Junior outside hitter Taylor Mims led WSU with 13 kills.

“I have been working a lot in practice in serving so, I felt confident today,” Urias said. “It helps the team a lot because not a lot of people get aces in a game, so the emotions and everyone is like, ‘Oh yeah! An ace! Let’s get another one!’ And I just keep going!”

Cal played without two starters, senior outside hitter Christine Alftin and junior setter Mackenzie Albrecht, due to injury. Senior outside hitter Antzela Dempi matched Mims with 13 kills for the Golden Bears.

WSU is ninth in total team blocks at 290 and eighth in team blocks per set with 2.99 of all 329 Division I teams. Individually, Urias is eighth in total blocks with 144 and 14th in blocks per set at 1.48.

Looking ahead, the Cougars’ next match is against No. 2 Stanford (21-3, 14-1). The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. tonight in Bohler Gym and will be televised on Pac-12 Networks.

“Anytime you can play well, not even a 3-0 win, but just playing extremely well and getting that win and moving forward, I think it’s a great thing,” Greeny said. “Stanford is an incredibly tough team, I’m sure they’re ready to bounce back after that [University of] Washington match, but we have to be ready to play well and fight hard.”

Reporting by Ryan Mosher