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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona volleyball struggles in SoCal

The Arizona volleyball team’s road trip to Los Angeles didn’t go so well, as the UA lost games against USC and UCLA.

Arizona (9-8, 1-5 Pac-12) fell to No. 5 USC (17-25, 16-25, 21-25) and No. 6 UCLA (25-16, 25-20, 27-25), both with a score of 3-0.

“We have to keep in mind that we just faced two ranked teams,” head coach Dave Rubio said. “There is definitely still a lot of work that needs to be done.”

This weekend was the first time Arizona played a Pac-12 match away. Against USC on Friday, the Wildcats’ offense struggled to get through the block and were held to .140 hitting percentage on the match.

Rubio expressed disappointment about the performance and said that Arizona’s effort and will to compete was not at a level he was satisfied with.

“This time last year our record was very similar, the only difference was the win against UCLA last year,” Rubio said. “But these two teams are very, very different. The progress that needs to take place is obvious.”

Last year, Arizona took both conference wins from UCLA. This year the task proved more difficult. The Wildcats’ starting lineup has two freshmen, three sophomores and three juniors. By comparison, UCLA is led by one of the most experienced players in the conference, not to mention the Bruins are reigning national champions.

The Bruins were led by senior outside hitter Tabi Love and Rachael Kidder and the team held a .333 hitting percentage versus Arizona’s .258. Arizona’s roster still needs time to reach a more consistent level of play.

“I think our matches against Stanford and Washington were the most competitive we’ve played this season,” Rubio said. “We get back on the road again next weekend and we’ll have to see how prepared we are by then.”

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