A trip to the Bay Area ended in disappointment, as Arizona State volleyball (10-7, 2-4 Pac-12) was swept in both road contests on Friday and Sunday.
Match One: No. 16 Cal
Power outages in the Bay Area forced the Sun Devils to play on a neutral court against No. 16 Cal, but the Sun Devils came up short, losing in three sets (25-20, 25-20, 25-19) on Friday night.
For the Golden Bears, the sweep took place in rivalry territory, as both teams were rerouted south and had to play at Maples Pavilion, the home of the Stanford Cardinal.
The Sun Devils dropped to 10-6 on the year, and 2-3 in Pac-12 play. Despite the game being moved away from Berkeley, Cal (14-1, 4-1 Pac-12) took care of business.
Offensive struggles have plagued the Devils in conference play, but that was not the case on Friday night. ASU’s .287 hitting percentage was its best in the past four games.
Senior Jada Burse recorded 13 kills in a career night. In her sixth match of the year with double-digit kills, she hit a career-high .591 in the match. Outside hitters Iman Isanovic and Andrea Mitrovic had nine kills each.
The defensive unit however, struggled. The Bears .356 hitting percentage was the third highest allowed by the Devils. In the final set, Cal hit the ball with a .562 clip, a mark nearly impossible to beat. Senior libero Courtney Leffel continued to be the defensive bright spot, as she led all players in digs with 17. Junior Megan Beedie finished with four blocks.
ASU found help from their offensive unit as well on defense. Isanovic chipped in three blocks and Mitrovic earned seven digs.
Head coach Sanja Tomasevic continued to use the two setter system, as they split the passing duties as usual. Callie Jones and Noa Miller both reached double-figures in assists with 20 and 14, respectively. Miller helped out on the defensive side as well, as she earned her third double-double of the year with 10 digs.
Unfortunately for ASU, though, Cal’s talent shined through. They were able to come up with the victory.
Match Two: No. 2 Stanford
A strong performance from Isanovic was the Sun Devils bright spot, but No. 2 Stanford prevailed in three straight sets (25-18, 25-21, 25-22) back at Maples Pavilion on Sunday afternoon.
It was an offensive battle in Palo Alto as Stanford (11-3, 5-1 Pac-12) hit .398 in the win, not much higher than Arizona State’s .317. The Sun Devils’ .317 clip was the third-highest hitting percentage this season, behind .330 against Arizona and .321 at UNLV.
Isanovic finished with a new career-high in kills with 13, surpassing her previous high of 11 at Louisville. She led both teams in kills on Sunday, and her hitting percentage was also a career high, finishing with a career-best .462. She killed 13 of 26 with just one error. Her previous career best clip was .455 against Texas A&M Corpus Christi.
The Sun Devils stuck to the two setter system once more, as Jones and Miller split the duties evenly, earning 21 and 20 assists. Miller’s 20 assists served as new career-highs.
Stanford was strong offensively, but Leffel notched 11 digs in the setback, as she continued her hot-streak. She now has double-digit digs in five of the last six matches.
ASU is now 10-7 on the year, 2-4 in Pac-12 play. The Sun Devils hit the road again next weekend, traveling up to the northwest to take on Washington and Washington State.