Women’s volleyball regains form with win over Sun Devils

Defending champions notch second win of the season.

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There’s a team winning in Maples Pavilion in March, and it’s not women’s basketball (anymore). In its first home game in over a month, Stanford women’s volleyball (2-5, 2-5 Pac-12) swept Arizona State (4-11, 4-11 Pac-12) 3-0 to earn its second win of the season. 

The Cardinal trailed close behind the Sun Devils for most of the first set. They weren’t able to take the lead until late, when three kills from senior outside hitter Meghan McClure and a service ace from sophomore setter Selina Xu put the Cardinal ahead 19-18.

A service error from Xu and an attacking error on the next point gave the Sun Devils the lead, forcing a timeout from head coach Kevin Hambly a few points later with Stanford trailing 22-20. Coming out of the timeout, redshirt freshman middle blocker McKenna Vicini earned herself a kill and a service ace on the next point forced Arizona State to respond with a timeout of its own with the set tied at 22. The Sun Devils timeout did little to stop redshirt freshman outside hitter Caitie Baird, who logged two of the last three Stanford points to clinch the first set 25-22.

The second set started with more back-and-forth between the Cardinal and Sun Devils, with neither team able to cement a lead larger than two points. A kill by true freshman middle blocker Annabelle Smith put the Cardinal ahead 13-10, but Arizona State quickly responded. 

Arizona State made an error on its following serve and another kill by Smith forced a timeout from the Sun Devils with the score in favor of the Cardinal, 15-11. This timeout, and another one six points later, did little to keep Hambly’s squad from running away with the second set to the tune of a 25-16 score. 

The third set was almost a carbon copy of the second: the Cardinal led 13-10 before Sun Devils head coach Sanja Tomasevic quickly called a timeout, but it once again failed to stop Stanford’s offense. A kill by McClure, who hit .444 for the match, helped continue a 6-1 Stanford run, which forced Tomasevic to call her last timeout of the set. 

A service error by true freshman libero Elena Oglivie gave the ball back to Arizona State, but the Sun Devils were unable to put a dent in Stanford’s six-point lead. Smith, who hit .286, combined with McClure for four of the last five Stanford kills to close out the match. 

The Sun Devils will look for revenge against the Cardinal in a rematch on Sunday at Maples Pavilion at 12 p.m. PT.

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Michael Espinosa '22 is majoring in international relations. He's the head of The Daily's social media team, and editor for the University beat and also occasionally writes for sports, arts, and The Grind. He's the biggest Taylor Swift fan at Stanford and the proudest New Yorker you will ever meet. Contact him at mespinosa 'at' stanforddaily.com.