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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    UA loses final Pac-10 matches

    Almost everything that could have worked against the Arizona volleyball team did, from injuries to traveling circumstances to illness.

    The Wildcats (16-14, 6-12 Pacific 10 Conference) lost to Washington (24-4, 15-3) by a score of 3-1 (25-23, 25-23, 22-25, 25-17) Friday night. The next morning, they flew from Seattle to Spokane and then drove another hour and a half to Pullman to battle the Cougars (10-19, 3-15), but lost by a score of 3-2 (25-17, 25-21, 23-25, 21-25, 15-10).

    The journey to Washington is arguably the most difficult road trip the squad had to manage all season. To make matters worse, senior opposite hitter Randy Goodenough “”tweaked her back”” during a Thanksgiving Day practice, so she was unable to play in either match.

    That was just the first of many mishaps for the Wildcats.

    UA head coach Dave Rubio said some players were still sore or injured from Friday night’s match and later that evening a few players got sick – one even stayed up all night because of it.

    “”(Setter) Paige (Weber) and Whitney (Dosty) collided pretty severely in game four and they were both pretty dazed,”” Rubio said. “”That had some bearing the next night. … Brittany (Leonard) was throwing up all night (Friday), so she was really weak. Alanna (Resch) felt awkward and thought she bruised her ribs.””

    The head coach also said freshmen Dana Hutchinson and Kari Bardis were sick Friday night.

    “”On Saturday morning they felt horrible,”” Rubio said. “”There were several things that went on that led up to what happened Saturday night I think. The other kids went in and played well. Dana started and played great. I thought they played well as a team, there was no question.””

    Despite the tough circumstances and losses, the players felt they performed well.

    “”I think this weekend was the first weekend that we played really well on the road,”” said senior Brooke Buringrud. “”I think we came out really strong against Washington. We put up a really good fight. We had a lot of people play a really good match, so I was really proud of the team for that, especially after such a hard road trip.””

    The Wildcats out-hit the Huskies .222 to .194 and sophomore Tiffany Owens, who was named national and Pac-10 Player of the Week last week, led the team in kills both nights.

    She recorded 19 kills and 12 digs Friday, then had 26 kills and 14 digs the following night for her 10th double-double of the season and third in a row.

    Dosty led the team with a .324 hitting percentage Friday night and contributed 15 kills of her own.

    The squad is 0-9 on the road during conference matches and 6-3 at home, but this factor doesn’t seem to affect certain players.

    “”We didn’t come away with any wins, but we finally have proven to ourselves that (playing poorly) on the road is stupid,”” Weber said. “”Just because we’re on the road, it shouldn’t make the game any harder. It’s bittersweet to lose but at same time, just knowing that people are stepping up is a great feeling.””

    Along with Ownes, Weber recorded two double-doubles over the weekend. She had 50 assists and 11 digs against Washington then 63 and 13 against Washington State, respectively.

    The setter didn’t say much of her accomplishment as most of her reaction had little to do with herself.

    “”It feels good, but I wish I could get double-doubles every night because that means I’m making it that much easier for my team to succeed,”” Weber said. “”I know that can’t always be the circumstance, but with setting and passing, those are the two areas that I can do my part in to make the process of winning easier for the team.””

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