BOISE, Idaho — Playing without a true setter for the third straight match, Sacramento State dropped its third straight. This time, the Hornets fell at Boise State (25-4, 25-22, 25-15), in the third and final round of the Boise State Volleyball Classic on Saturday afternoon at Bronco Gym.
Injuries had a massive impact on the Hornets' performance at the two-day tournament as Sacramento State was playing without both setters on the roster. McKenna Smith is out for the season with a foot injury, and Ashtin Olin missed all three matches of the tournament with a knee injury, her first missed action of the season after hurting her knee last Saturday. Olin is questionable to play next week when the Hornets open Big Sky Conference play on the road at Montana and Montana State.
Playing at setter in all three matches of the tournament for the Hornets were a libero (Paige Swinney who set in the back row) and an outside hitter (Sarah Davis who set in the front row). Davis had never set in a match in her life prior to Friday and Swinney hadn't set since the sixth grade. Predictably, when playing a Div. I match with two players still learning the setter position, the Hornets ran into trouble.
Sacramento State was swept on Friday by Portland and 13th-ranked Washington, and swept again today. The Hornets had a chance to win a set in each match, falling 25-23 on a controversial call in the second set of the Portland match, squandering four set points in a 28-26 third set loss to Washington, and 25-22 today in the second.
The Hornets conclude the non-conference portion of the season with a 5-9 record as the team will attempt to defend its Big Sky regular-season championship next week on the road at the Montana schools.
With the win, Boise State improved to 2-2 at the tournament, and 8-3 overall.
The Hornets' Mikaela Nocetti was named to the all-tournament team after finishing the event with 4.22 kills and 1.33 digs per set while tacking on a pair of aces. She combined for 38 kills over three matches, including a match-high 13 in today's loss.
Nocetti was the only Hornet with more than four kills today as Sacramento State finished with 22 kills and a season-low .011 hitting percentage. Freshman Claudia Wilson had four kills, middle blocker Brie Gathright had five blocks and libero Skyler Takeda led the team with 12 digs. Freshman Paige Calvin tacked on seven digs, Davis had 11 assists and Swinney had eight assists and five digs.
Sacramento State used all 12 available players in today's match, including four freshmen and three sophomores.
For Boise State, which finished with 40 kills and a .301 hitting percentage, Sabryn Roberts had 12 kills and a .296 hitting percentage, and Janell Walley had seven kills and 13 digs.
Sacramento State will open Big Sky play on the road on Thursday at Montana and Saturday at Montana State. Both contests will begin at 6 p.m. PDT.