On their “Senior Night”, Arizona State volleyball defeated Washington State in four sets (25-23, 25-20, 19-25, 25-21) on Thursday night in Tempe, clinching eligibility for the NCAA tournament,
“Its so special and so fun,” senior Nicole Peterson said. “We came together as a team and got the job done.”
The Sun Devils’ (16-12, 8-9 Pac-12) defensive unit led the way, holding the Cougars’ (22-7, 11-6) offense to a .191 hitting percentage. Freshman Kennedi Boyd and senior Ivana Jeremic combined for eight blocks during the match. The offense did enough to boost t
The Devils got off to a hot start in the first set, going up 16-8 early. However the Cougars charged a comeback which lead to a 23-22 set lead. Three straight points for Arizona State, and a clinching kill from Burse secured the first set victory, 25-23.
The defense started the second set off with a bang for the Devils. The front row combined for three blocks in the first five points of the set. Boyd, Jeremic, and Burse all denied the Cougars’ offense up front. Arizona State held solid control throughout the whole set, eventually finishing the set with a 25-20 victory.
Washington State answered in the third set with a 25-19 victory. The Cougars momentum wouldn’t last long as the Sun Devils finished them in an intense fourth set. The Sun Devils pulled away after back and forth action, as the Devils won the set 25-21.
Middle blocker Megan Beedie, along with outside hitters Andrea Mitrovic and Jeremic, led the offensive attack for the Devils. Although the team had a hitting percentage less than .200, the balanced offensive attack provided enough scoring for Arizona State to take the match.
Jeremic, a four-year senior, provided an impact on both sides of the ball on her senior night. With a .310 clip, the experienced pin hitter racked up 10 kills. Her defensive effort showed in the stat line, as she managed to find four blocks and nine digs. Jada Burse, another senior, provided 8 kills in her outside role.
The senior setters took the role tonight, as Nicole Peterson and Callie Jones split the duties. They combined for 43 assists.
“The setters played real well,” head coach Sanja Tomasevic said. “We don’t want to be a left only team. We want to set left, right, and middle.”
With eligibility a lock, the Devils will try to improve their resume on Sunday afternoon, as they will take on the tenth-ranked Washington Huskies in Tempe.
“We’re not done yet,” Tomasevic said to end the press conference.