VOLLEYBALL OVERCOMES 2-0 DEFICIT, KNOCKS OFF SAN JOSE STATE IN FIVE SETS
SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Senior Desiree Hoyum had four of her match-high 18 kills in the decisive fifth set, and libero Breanne Menees added a team-best 25 digs to help Sacramento State defeat San Jose State, 3-2 (25-27, 18-25, 25-21, 25-18, 15-10), in a non-conference volleyball match Tuesday evening at Spartan Gym.
With the victory, Sacramento State (12-9) survived a scare as San Jose State had entered the match with an 0-14 record, including an 0-2 mark at home. That record for the Spartans worsened to 0-15 as the Hornets erased a 2-0 deficit to win in five sets for the first time since Sept. 17, 2005, when the team beat Michigan State.
Sacramento State has now won three straight and 10 of its last 14, as the Hornets were playing the first of two remaining non-conference matches on the schedule (Oct. 27 vs. Pacific). In addition, the team improved to 4-4 in five-set matches this season. The Hornets and Spartans were playing one another for just the 12th time since the series began in 1978, and each team has now won six matches apiece.
In the fifth set, Sacramento State hit .292 as a team and accumulated three aces compared to San Jose State’s zero aces and .107 hitting percentage. Four different Hornets had kills, including Hoyum (4), Maddison Thivierge (2), Janelle Currey (2) and Kelsey Elston (1). It was Thivierge’s kill followed by an ace from Sydney Kordic that gave the Hornets a 6-4 lead in the fifth, and the team never trailed the rest of the way. Freshman setter Hannah Hettinga played the entire fifth set and finished the frame with eight assists, an ace and three digs. Menees joined Hettinga and Kordic as the three Hornets with aces during the set.
The Hornets’ quartet of Hoyum (18), Thivierge (12), Currey (11) and Elston (7) combined for 48 of the team’s 53 kills during the match. Amazingly, Currey, who added 22 digs, had zero attack errors in 46 swings as the freshman outside hitter tallied her 12th double-double of the season. Hoyum also had 14 digs as she recorded her Big Sky Conference-leading 14th double-double of the year.
Elston’s seven kills accompanied a match-high six blocks, Menees recorded her third match of the season with at least 25 digs, and seven of Thivierge’s 12 kills came during the final two sets. Elston hit .250 (7-3-16), which was the highest hitting percentage for a Hornet with more than one kill.
Sacramento State did not hit all that well as a team (.178), but seven different players combined to contribute 11 service aces which tied for the third highest output of the season. Kordic (3), Hettinga (2), Menees (2), Currey (1), Elston (1), Hoyum (1) and Melissa Melcher (1) each had at least one ace. Kordic added 13 digs as the freshman tallied her 10th match with double figures in digs.
Hettinga, who took over the primary setter duties midway through the fourth frame, set or tied her season high in assists (19), aces (2) and digs (4).
San Jose State, which was limited to just a .157 hitting percentage, was led by Alex Akana’s 14 kills and .379 hitting percentage while Thao Pham led all players with 26 digs.
Sacramento State jumps back into Big Sky Conference play later this week with home matches against both Montana State (Oct. 16) and Montana (Oct. 17). Both contests begin at 7 p.m.