CEDAR CITY, Utah — Sacramento State hit .300 while limiting Southern Utah to a .104 percentage on the way to a three-set road sweep of the Thunderbirds (25-18, 25-16, 25-19) on Saturday afternoon at America First Event Center.
The victory gave the Hornets their first three-game sweep on the road this season while the team improved to 13-14 overall and 8-6 in the Big Sky Conference. Sacramento State also avenged a five-set loss to the Thunderbirds earlier this season at the Nest.
The win marked a solid bounce back performance for Sacramento State after being swept decisively on Thursday at Northern Arizona. There are just four regular season matches remaining for the Hornets, with two coming at home and two on the road. Sacramento State is now in a three-way tie for fourth place, and just one game back of second place Weber State (9-5). The Hornets will host this year's Big Sky Tournament on Nov. 28-30.
The Hornets never trailed during the first two sets, and Southern Utah took its first lead of the match after starting the third frame on a 5-0 run. The Thunderbirds dropped to 13-13 overall, 6-8 in league play, and 6-4 at home. Southern Utah had just swept Portland State at home on Thursday evening.
Sacramento State's .300 hitting percentage was the team's second highest output of the season, as the Hornets finished with 44 kills and just 14 errors in 100 total attacks. Conversely, Southern Utah finished with a .104 hitting percentage, totaling 27 kills and 17 errors in 96 attacks. Sacramento State also had big advantages over the Thunderbirds in assists (39-24), digs (47-35) and team blocks (8.0-4.0). Southern Utah failed to hit better than .156 in any of the three sets.
For the Hornets, senior Sarah Davis led the team in kills for the 21st consecutive match, finishing with 13 kills. Despite the match lasting just three sets, four Hornets had at least eight kills, including rightside hitter Kayla Subbert who finished with nine kills, four blocks and a .300 hitting percentage. Outside hitter Macey Hayden posted eight kills, six digs and a .333 hitting percentage, and middle blocker Cianna Andrews had eight kills and four blocks.
Setter Ashtin Olin had two kills, a .500 hitting percentage, 29 assists, an ace, 14 digs and two blocks. The 14 digs were a team high while libero Michelle Taynton finished with 11 digs and six assists. Middle blocker Sarah Falk had four kills, four blocks and a .300 hitting percentage, and Paige Swinney added six digs.
The Hornets play their final two regular season home matches next week on Thursday vs. Weber State at 7 p.m., and Saturday vs. Idaho State at 7 p.m. Saturday is Senior Night as the team's lone senior, Sarah Davis, will be honored for her contributions to the program.
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