Junior S Evan Sanders
Aug. 31, 2010
By Danny Mattie
Athletic Media Relations
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - The No. 15-ranked Colorado State volleyball team improved to 3-0 to start the 2010 season, sweeping in-state rival Colorado on Tuesday night at Moby Arena.
The win - 25-19, 25-22, 22-16 - marked the sixth consecutive for CSU in the series with Colorado, and gave CSU its sixth 3-0 start under Head Coach Tom Hilbert.
The Rams struggled early on against an improved Buffs squad, but was able to take advantage of CU's 15 service errors - eight of which came in the opening set - to capture the convincing victory in front of the 3,472 fans packed into Moby.
"This was an interesting match," said Head Coach Tom Hilbert. "I thought that we got better set-to-set. We hit more unforced errors, which is uncharacteristic of us, and CU missed more serves than they normally do. That made point scoring a little weird that way."
Despite hitting just .160 in Set 1, compared with CU's .188 hitting percentage, the set was really never in doubt after the Rams extended a 14-13 advantage to 23-16 punctuated by a Danielle Minch kill, one of her game-high-tying eight on the night.
The Buffs woes at the service line continued as CSU's final two points of the set came off of CU service errors, and the Rams escaped with 25-19 win.
"I really feel like we settled down at the end of this match and we did some nice things," added Hilbert. "We're obviously a good blocking team and we showed that tonight. I'm proud of our team for getting through this three-match stretch."
The Rams hitting percentage improved to .188 in the second set, and by the third-and-final set, CSU was clicking on all cylinders, hitting .588, while holding CU to .065 to clinch the victory. For the match, the Rams outhit the buffs .270 to .128.
Colorado State's blocking also improved as the match wore on. CSU tallied just one team block in Set 1, but turned CU away twice in the second stanza. By the third set, the Rams notched three team blocks, including solo rejections from sophomores Dana Cranston and Brieon Paige, to outblock CU 6.0-4.0 for the match.
Minch led the Rams with eight kills on .462 hitting in the match and added a pair of service aces. Junior Katelyn Steffan and senior Jacque Davisson each tallied seven kills. Davisson also led CSU with nine digs in the match, and tallied three assisted blocks, tying sophomore Megan Plourde, who tallied four kills, for match-high honors. Cranston was near perfect, killing four-of-five attacks to record an. 800 hitting percentage. Junior setter Evan Sanders tallied a match-high 25 assists for the Rams.
Colorado State continues action this weekend, traveling to Gainesville, Fla., for the University of Florida's Campus USA Credit Union Invitational. The Rams open the tourney with two Friday matches - vs. Bowling Green (8 a.m. MT) and vs. Albany (3 p.m. MT) - before taking on the No. 6-ranked Gators on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. MT.
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