Nov. 2, 2008
Stanford, Calif. -
The Stanford women's volleyball team put together another strong effort this afternoon, hitting .404 in a 25-12, 25-19, 25-22 rout of the Washington State Cougars at Maples Pavilion.
Stanford improves to 19-3 with the win, and, combined with Washington's win over California in Berkeley today, takes sole possession of first place in the Pac-10 with a 10-1 record. Washington State drops to 7-15 and 0-11 in the conference.
Stanford completed a season sweep of both Washington schools in the same year for the first time since 2001. The Cardinal swept in all four matches with the teams from the Evergreen State for the first time since 1999.
Sophomore libero Gabi Ailes turned in 19 digs to pace the Cardinal defensively and recorded arguably her best performance this year. Her dig total was her highest so far in Pac-10 play this season and a career high for a three-set match.
Senior outside hitter Cynthia Barboza recorded eight of her 13 kills in the final set to lead all players offensively. Sophomore Alix Klineman added 10 kills and senior Foluke Akinradewo recorded seven kills on 12 swings. Sophomore Cassidy Lichtman led the team with four blocks and 21 assists.
Washington State was led by junior outside hitter Jackie Albright's 11 kills, eight of which came in the second set. Sophomore middle blocker Brittany Tillman added eight kills for the Cougars.
Stanford hit .404, reaching .400 for the fourth time this year and first in Pac-10 play. Washington State hit .118, the 14th opponent this year to hit under .200 against the Cardinal.
Akinradewo contributed a block and a kill to get the Cardinal started in the first set, helping her team take five of the match's first six points and grab a quick four-point lead. Stanford began to run with three straight points at 11-7, taking a 14-7 lead on a Cougar attacking error. Barboza's third kill of the set pushed Stanford another point ahead at 17-9, and the Cardinal turned the first set into a slaughter soon after with a 6-0 run to make it 23-10. Klineman gave the Cardinal set point with her third kill at 24-12, and Akinradewo finished the job with her third at 25-12. Stanford hit .400 in the first set and held the Cougars to a negative percentage.
Albright had three kills early in the second set for the Cougars, tying the score for the first time of the afternoon at 2-2 and again at 4-4. Lichtman had two kills in the 5-0 run that followed however, and Stanford once again positioned itself for a rout. Lichtman paired with Janet Okogbaa for back-to-back blocks to make it 13-6, and Stanford settled for roughly an even exchange from there. The Cardinal finally extended its lead with four straight points to make it 23-14, and took set point on a kill by Alex Fisher at 24-15. Albright led WSU on its best run of the day to fight off four consecutive set points, but a Cougar serve sailed deep to finish things, 25-19. For the second straight set, Stanford reached the .400 hitting plateau (.438). Washington State hit .219 in the second set and was led by Albright's eight kills.
In the third set, neither team was able to break away before the midpoint. Stanford put together a 3-0 run to go up 8-6, but WSU rallied back with four points in a row to take a 10-8 lead. Stanford took the momentum back with a 5-1 run to make it 13-11, and held the two-point advantage at the media break, 15-13. The Cougars tied the set twice soon after the timeout, and battled back to tie again on a Stanford ball-handling error at 22-22. Lichtman put up a big block with Akinradewo on the next point, however, beginning a three-point surge to the finish. A Cougar error gave Stanford set point, and Lichtman put up another block, this time with Okogbaa, to clinch the win, 25-22. Stanford hit .375 in the final set and held the Cougars to a .175 clip. Barboza led all players with eight of her 13 kills in set three.
Stanford is back on the road next week, traveling to the desert to take on Arizona State and Arizona. The Cardinal will face the Sun Devils in Tempe on Friday and the Wildcats in Tucson on Saturday. Both matches are slated for 7 p.m. starts.