No. 3 USC Outlasts Oklahoma For 11th Straight Victory|
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Sept. 17, 2015
NORMAN, Okla. -- The No. 3-ranked USC women's volleyball team (11-0) overcame Oklahoma (5-5) to defeat the Sooners in four sets, 25-14, 23-25, 25-20, 25-20, in the Oklahoma Invitational at the McCasland Field House on Thursday, Sept. 17. Despite having their 30-set winning streak snapped, the Women of Troy bounced back to claim the victory with four players in double-digit kills.
Senior outside hitter Samantha Bricio scored 24.0 points with 19 kills (4e, 41att, .366), three service aces, and four blocks. Bricio also added five digs to her final line. When the dust settled, Bricio had crossed the 1,600-kill mark and now has 1,605 career kills; one of just six Trojan women with that many.
Bricio had plenty of help at the pins as freshman outside hitter Alyse Ford finished with a career-high 13 kills (3e, 20att, .500) and sophomore opposite Brittany Abercrombie had 11 kills (2e, 25att, .360) to go with a pair of blocks. In the middle, senior Alicia Ogoms tallied 11 kills and had eight blocks (two solo) for a career-high 16.0 points. Junior middle blocker Elise Ruddins went error-free and had eight kills (0e, 12att, .667) with four blocks.
The Trojans hit .460 in the match (68k, 10e, 126att) thanks to the setting of freshman Baylee Johnson and junior Alice Pizzasegola. Johnson had 28 assists but was an all-around player with six kills (0e, 9att, .667), seven digs, and two blocks. Pizzasegola had 30 assists. Defensively, the Trojans finished with 12.0 blocks. Junior libero Taylor Whittingham had 19 digs and freshman defender Victoria Garrick had 11 digs.
For the Sooners, three players finished with 11 kills apiece including Kimmy Gardiner (2e, 23att, .391), Micaela Spann (2e, 22att, .409), and Madison Ward (3e, 29att, .276). Gardiner had a double-double with 18 digs. The Sooners hit .282 in the match (55k, 18e, 131att).
The Trojans first created separation in the opening set when a block by Johnson and Ruddins led to a 6-3 lead. Johnson connected with Abercrombie who terminated for a four-point USC lead at 14-10, but the Trojans were just warming up as Johnson and Ogoms teamed for the block and a big eight-point lead at 20-12. USC went on a 5-1 run to end the set and finished off the Sooners with a pair of service aces from Bricio.
Five straight points put the Trojans on the ropes as the Sooners came out recharged in set two. USC pulled with two at 9-7, but Oklahoma scored four straight to open up a six-point lead. Even as the Trojans pulled within three, the Sooners went back ahead by six, until a 4-1 run put USC in front, 22-21. Like a broken record, Oklahoma did the same and had its own 4-1 run to close out the set, 25-23, and snap USC's 30-set winning streak.
A little tug-of-war opened up the third but USC reeled off a four-point run to lead, 9-6, early on. The Sooners then went 4-0 before the Trojans responded with another 4-0 run of their own to hold a 13-10 lead. The teams traded barbs until USC scored two straight points on a kill and a solo block by Ogoms for a 23-18 lead. Bricio scored set point on her kill, but Ford did the honors as she knocked down the final point of a 25-20 win in the third.
Before anyone had noticed, the Trojans held a 6-1 lead to open the fourth set. The Sooners prevented their wheels from coming off and turned a 4-1 run into a two-point deficit at 7-5, but a kill by Johnson put USC up by six, 18-12. The teams traded 3-0 runs and then went back and forth before a kill from Abercrombie sealed a 25-20 win to put USC's 3-1 victory into the books.
Up next, the Women of Troy will face Maryland (10-2) in a 4:30 p.m. CT (2:30 p.m. PT) match on Friday, Sept. 18, to close the Oklahoma Invitational. The Terrapins fell in a 3-0 sweep to Washington earlier today.
To purchase season or single-match tickets for USC home matches, visit GetTrojanTix.com or call (213) 740-GOSC. For more information on the USC women's volleyball team and a complete schedule, please visit USCTrojans.com and follow @USCWomensVolley on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Periscope.