Utah State volleyball defeats San José State in gritty five-set win – Cache Valley Daily


LOGAN, Utah – It was a battle from start to finish inside the Wayne Estes Center on Thursday night as Utah State volleyball (18-8, 10-5 Mountain West) defeated San José State (18-7, 12-3 MW) 3-2 in a match featuring 36 ties and 16 lead changes.

That was so fun,” head coach Rob Neilson said. “I’m so proud of our group. That’s just a really good San José State team and that was gritty from us. So many people came in off the bench and contributed. We finally found the right mix. It’s great to get a win in here in front of this crowd.”

A kill from graduate opposite side hitter Emilee Turner followed by a block from junior outside hitter Tatum Stall gave USU a 5-2 edge in set one. A 3-0 Spartan spurt later gave SJSU an 8-7 edge. The teams stayed within two points until back-to-back San José State errors put Utah State on top 22-19. Two more SJSU errors gave USU set point and a kill from senior middle blocker Kennedi Boyd clinched the 25-21 victory.

Set two was the only stanza not to feature a tie or lead change as the Spartans won 25-18.

The third was a set of runs as a 5-0 spurt gave the Aggies a 12-10 lead. A 3-0 San José State run later trimmed the margin to 17-16. USU extended its advantage to 22-20 with a 3-0 spurt, but SJSU scored the final five points of the set for the 25-22 win.

San José State jumped out to an early 4-0 advantage in set four, but Utah State chipped away at the lead until a kill from senior opposite Kylee Stokes and a SJSU attacking error tied it at 8-all. A 4-1 Spartan run gave SJSU a 16-13 edge, but the Aggies countered with a 5-0 run, capped by a Stokes kill, for the 18-16 lead. The teams then went back and forth until kills from Stall and redshirt freshman opposite Kaylie Ray gave USU set point 24-20. The Spartans scored twice more before a Boyd block sent the teams to a fifth set as USU won 25-22.

The Spartans scored the first point of set five, but the Aggies quickly countered with a Ray block, Stall kill and a service ace from redshirt sophomore libero Jordi Holdaway for the 3-1 edge. The teams traded points until a 5-1 SJSU run gave San José State a 12-10 advantage. A Spartan service error and Stall kill then tied the set at 12-apiece before a Stokes kill and SJSU error gave the Aggies match point 14-13.

The set was far from over, however, as the teams went back and forth until SJSU took match point 20-19. A block from Boyd and Stokes once again tied the set and a kill from senior outside Shelby Capllonch gave the Aggies match point 21-20 before another Boyd and Stokes block secured the 22-20 victory.

“It felt amazing,” Capllonch said. “And the crowd. We had to yell at each other to talk to each other on the court. Full out. I’m pretty sure half the team is going to lose their voice tomorrow. The crowd really brought us in that last set, especially the last 20 points of that whole fifth set. It was amazing being out there with our team. The bench was going crazy. We were going crazy. Rob was going crazy. It was amazing. It’s such a great feeling.”

Stall led the Aggies with 17 kills, while Holdaway led with 14 digs. Capllonch logged a double-double of 15 kills and 11 digs, and Boyd added 10 kills and a team-high five blocks. Both Utah State setters finished with over 20 assists as sophomore Beatriz Rodrigues had 26 and freshman Leah Wilton-LaBoy had 21.

Overall, USU hit .188 (60-30-160), while SJSU hit .220 (62-27-159).

Utah State next hosts Nevada (13-13, 7-8 MW) in its home finale on Saturday, Nov. 12, at 1 p.m. Prior to the match, the Aggies will honor their four seniors for senior day in Grace DuBay, Myrthe Maring, Stokes and Turner.

Fans can follow the Aggie volleyball program on Twitter, @USUVolleyball, on Facebook at /USUVolleyball or on Instagram, @usuvolleyball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program on Twitter, @USUAthletics, Facebook at /USUAthletics and on Instagram, @USUAthletics.







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