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Utah Volleyball Loses to No. 4 Washington State and Washington Huskies

This week, the Utes will return to Salt Lake City to take on the Arizona State Sun Devils on Friday.
The+Utah+women%E2%80%99s+volleyball+takes+on+the+Oregon+State+Beavers+at+Jon+M.+Huntsman+Center+in+Salt+Lake+City+on+Friday%2C+Oct.+06%2C+2023.+%28Photo+by+Xiangyao+%E2%80%9CAxe%E2%80%9D+Tang+%7C+The+Daily+Utah+Chronicle%29
Xiangyao Tang
The Utah women’s volleyball takes on the Oregon State Beavers at Jon M. Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City on Friday, Oct. 06, 2023. (Photo by Xiangyao “Axe” Tang | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

 

The University of Utah volleyball team (8-10, 3-5 Pac-12) took a trip into the Pacific Northwest this week, where they took on the No. 4 Washington State Cougars and the Washington Huskies. The Utes are returning from two home games against the Oregon schools, which they split with a win and a loss.

Washington State

The first set started with both teams staying relatively close to each other. Then, Washington State became hot and went on a 13-5 run. Using this momentum, the Cougars took control of the game and ultimately won the first set 25-15.

The Cougars started the second set hot, scoring six points off the bat and taking a four-point lead. Following a Ute comeback, the game quickly became tight-knit. The two teams stayed within two points of each other for the rest of the first half of the set. Washington State began to create separation, taking a significant lead. The Utes bid a strong rally effort late in the set, but it was too little too late. The Cougars ended up winning the set 25-21.

Like the previous two sets, the third set started off quite competitively. The two teams traded the first seven points, but it didn’t take long for the Cougars to find their stride. Completing a 8-2 run and scoring six points in a row, the Cougars looked to sweep. Down eleven, the Utes called their final time out. The Cougars won the match with their 25-12 win in the third set, handing Utah a 3-0 loss. 

Amelia Van Der Werff led the team in kills with six and Allie Olsen earned two aces.

Washington

Following the loss against fourth-ranked Washington State, the Utes traveled west to take on the Washington Huskies. The first set started off fiercely competitive, with both teams trading the first few points. The Utes then found their stride, going on an 8-2 run, and taking the early lead in the first set. Utah used their momentum to win the set 25-19.

The Huskies took an early lead in the second set and held on to it. Trailing for the majority of the set, the Utes attempted to build momentum and rally, but to no avail. In complete control, the Huskies managed to protect their lead and win the set with a score of 25-20, tying the match at one set a piece.

The third set was a tight foot race to the end. Both teams maintained close proximity to each other until the very end. The Huskies got hot at the end of the set, going on a 5-0 run. This forced the Utes to use both of their timeouts late. Coming out of the Utes’ second timeout, the Huskies did not slow down, scoring two more points to win the set 25-20.

The close competition produced an absolute thriller of a fourth set. Tied 20-20 late in the set, Washington scored two quickly, forcing Utah to take a late timeout and recollect themselves. The Utes then scored a point and a crucial kill by Emrie Satuala tied the game at 23.

Washington scored a point to break the tie and set up the match-point serve, but the Utes foiled their attempt to win. The Utes finished the job, earning the set-winning point, knotting the match at two sets for each team.

The excitement did not disappear in the fifth set, as both teams continued to play neck-and-neck with each other. The back-and-forth nature of this set produced a 13-13 tie late in the set. A Huskies’ point forced a match point, but Utah effectively retaliated, tying the game once again. Finally, the Huskies went on to score two points in a row to win the match 3-2

Despite the loss, the Utes had a terrific showing. Both Allie Olsen and Vanessa Ramirez earned three aces, Viktoria Wahlgren put up a career-high 51 assists, and Satuala led the team in both kills and blocks.

Next Up

This week, the Utes will return to Salt Lake City to take on the Arizona State Sun Devils on Friday, Oct. 20, which will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network. Then, on Sunday, the Utes will face the Arizona Wildcats for their tenth Pac-12 matchup of the season.

 

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@jonahmarriott

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About the Contributors
Jonah Marriott
Jonah Marriott, Sports Writer
(he/him) Jonah Marriott is sports writer from Ogden, Utah. He inherited his love for sports from his parents and is an avid fan of the major Detroit sports franchises. He joined the Chronicle in the fall of 2023 and is studying mechanical engineering.
Xiangyao Tang
Xiangyao Tang, Photo Director
Axe is a photographer and the photo director of the Daily Utah Chronicle. He is from China and is a senior majoring in computer science and minoring in digital photography. Axe joined the Chronicle in August of 2021. In addition to his position at the Chrony, he is also a photo intern for University of Utah Athletics. When he's not writing code, you will find him rock climbing, camping, skiing or hiking with his camera.

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