Airial Salvo had a team-high 15 kills in the 3-0 win over UNC today.
Sept. 1, 2006
LOS ANGELES - The University of Utah volleyball team (2-1 overall) overcame a sluggish start as it was able to win its first match of the USC/LMU Classic, topping North Carolina here today, 3-0.
Utah won the first frame despite hitting a measly .094 (16-11-53). The Utes finished the match hitting .229 which was buoyed by .448 hitting (18-5-29) in the third game. On the other side of the net, UNC (1-3) never hit better than .109, hitting .026 for the match.
Game scores were 30-27, 30-23 and 30-9.
"It was a slow process for our team to get into that match today," said head coach Beth Launiere. "We didn't start the match focused and I thought that our execution was all over the place. I challenged the team the entire first two games to compete hard and once we settled down and got into it, I think we started to play a lot better."
Airial Salvo paced the offense in netting 15 kills on .273 hitting. She finished with her second straight double-double in tallying a season-high 18 digs. Salvo was the only Ute with double-digit kills but Whitney Webb led all outsides in hitting .368 for the match. She had nine kills on 19 swings. Emillie Toone led all players in racking up kills at a .357 clip. She finished with seven kills.
"Whitney has been playing solid volleyball for us," said Launiere. "She's been a stable player for us on the right side. We're very confident that if we get her the ball, she's going to put it away for us."
Both Sydney Anderson and Shannon Krug ran the offense today. Anderson got the start and dished out 20 assists and had six digs and two blocks. Krug came on midway through the second game to hand out 19 assists.
Connie Dangerfield served Utah to an 8-0 run that gave the Utes a much-needed 17-11 lead in game one. The pesky Tar Heels did a number on Utah's six-point lead to cut it down to 20-18 and even had it down to one at 24-23 and 28-27. But, a Webb and Lovell kill ended the game in giving Utah the three-point win.
A nip-and-tuck second game didn't fall into Utah's favor until it pulled away late, 25-20. Utah's lead streatched to six, 29-23, as a Salvo-Toone block and an attack error on UNC sealed the seven-point victory.
The third game was all Utah as it jumped out to a 10-2 lead on the Tar Heels. That lead swelled to 24-7 as Utah easily cruised to the 21-point win. A Salvo ace and a Robison kill ended it all.
The Utes return to action tomorrow night when they play host USC. Action against the No. 14-ranked Women of Troy is set to start at 2 p.m. (PST).
Notes: 11 of the 12 players saw action in today's win ... the third game marks the second time this season Utah held an opponent under 10 points. Utah beat Arkansas State in game one last weekend, 30-7.