STANFORD, Calif. – After a hot start, the sixth-ranked Stanford women’s volleyball came up short against No. 4 USC, falling 3-2 (25-16, 23-25, 18-25, 25-22, 9-15), Wednesday, at Maples Pavilion in Stanford, Calif. The Cardinal drops to 15-5 on the season and 8-3 in the Pac-12, while the Trojans move to 19-3 overall and 9-2 in the conference.
Junior libero Kyle Gilbert registered a career-high 33 digs, tying the school record for digs in a single match with Gabi Ailes (’10). Sophomore setter Madi Bugg turned in her fifth double-double of the season with 61 assists and 17 digs, both career highs.
Sophomore outside hitter Jordan Burgess led the team with a season-best 17 kills and a career-high tying 25 digs for her third double-double of the season. The other time she posted 25 digs was also against the Trojans last season in Los Angeles. Sophomore Brittany Howard also recorded 17 kills, a new career high, to go with 16 digs and three blocks.
Sophomore middle blocker Inky Ajanaku finished with a season-high 14 kills on a .524 attack percentage, while tallying four blocks. Senior middle blocker Carly Wopat added 12 kills and five blocks, while senior Rachel Williams totaled 10 kills and a season-best 13 digs. She leads the team with eight double-doubles.
Playing in its second five-set match of the season, Stanford came out hot hitting .516 in the first set, but failed to hit better than .257 after that. The Cardinal dropped its first match at Maples Pavilion this season, and the first at home since a second-round loss in the NCAA Tournament to Michigan in 2011.
As a team, Stanford hit .251 in the match, registering season highs of 71 kills, 68 assists and 108 digs. USC finished with a .257 team hitting percentage and recorded 74 kills and 104 digs. The Trojans also edged the Cardinal in the block column, 11.0 to 10.0. Freshman Ebony Nwanebu led USC and registered a match-high 21 kills. USC libero Natalie Hagglund finished with a match-best 36 digs.
Stanford closes out its four-match homestand on Friday, Nov. 1 against UCLA. The Cardinal and Bruins will square off at 8 p.m. PT on the Pac-12 Networks.