CORVALLIS — The red-hot Oregon State volleyball team won its fourth straight match Friday evening with a four-set defeat of Arizona State. It is the second straight Pac-12 sweep for the Beavers and their first four-match win streak in conference since 1990.
With the win, OSU evened its conference record at 5-5 to finish the first half of the Pac-12 season. The Beavers are now 15-7 overall. Arizona State falls to 10-11 and 0-1 in conference play. Set scores were 27-29, 25-17, 25-16 and 25-23.
"Arizona State played very well tonight, and we played not as well as I had hoped," head coach Mark Barnard said. "But credit to ASU — we were only allowed to play to a certain level. The difference is that we finished out a tight match."
Arizona State, which entered the match seeking its first conference win of the season, came out firing early in the match. Oluoma Okaro recorded eight kills in the first set to pace the Sun Devils. ASU ultimately came away with a 29-27 decision to take the opening stanza.
Trailing one set to none, the Beavers responded in the second set with Mary-Kate Marshall providing the fireworks with seven kills. OSU also picked up its service game a notch, recording a trio of aces from Kory Cheshire and Maddie Goings. Middle blockers Cheshire and Maddy Gravley, who were on fire throughout the match, each terminated on half of their attacks in the period and the Beavers took the set going away, 25-17.
OSU took a quick 2-0 lead in third set before stumbling to a 5-2 deficit and into a timeout. From that point the Beavers went on an 18-7 run to take a commanding 20-12 lead as setter Kylee McLaughlin varied an effective offense. Cheshire put away all four of her attacks while Marshall recorded five kills to go with a pair of aces in the set.
Oregon State led the fourth set from the outset pushing its lead to five at 20-15. However, the Sun Devils were persistent fighting back to tie it up at 22-22 and again at 23-23. The Beavers were able to hold off the Devils with a pair of timely kills from Cheshire and one from Marshall to score the final point and win the final set, 25-23.