VOLLEYBALL WINS SIXTH STRAIGHT AT HOME, KNOCKS OFF IDAHO STATE IN FIVE
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Four Hornets posted double figures in kills, led by freshman Kayla Beal’s season-best 20, as Sacramento State defeated Idaho State, 3-2 (25-17, 25-18, 23-25, 24-26, 15-7), in a Big Sky Conference volleyball match Friday evening at Colberg Court.
With the victory, Sacramento State won its sixth straight at home while improving to 10-10 overall and 3-2 in the conference. The Hornets have not lost at home since a five-set defeat against UTSA on Sept. 3, and have also won three straight Big Sky matches inside the friendly confines dating back to last weekend. The Hornets complete their four-match homestand tomorrow evening against Weber State at 7 p.m.
With the loss, Idaho State dropped to 10-8 and 3-4 in the Big Sky. The Hornets are now 26-4 all-time against the Bengals, including a 14-1 mark in Sacramento.
Sacramento State won the first two sets handily, but Idaho State stormed back to win the third and fourth frames. That included saving a match point for the Hornets at 24-23 to win the fourth by a 26-24 tally. However, in the fifth frame, it was all Sacramento State. The Hornets jumped out to a 3-0 lead and never trailed the entire frame, opening up an advantage as large as 14-5. Beal had three of her kills in the set as Sacramento State hit .350 (9-2-20) in the fifth compared to a -.038 percentage (4-5-26) for the Bengals.
“This was a very good win for three reasons,” Sacramento State head coach Ruben Volta said. “First, we came out fast and played very well early on. Secondly, we proved we could come back after facing some adversity (after losing the third and fourth frames). Lastly, its important to protect our home floor and we’ve been able to do that so far.”
Beal was nearly unstoppable, as she led all players with a .385 hitting percentage, committing just five errors in 39 attacks while also adding four blocks. The rightside hitter has posted double figures in kills in three straight matches, and the Hornets improved to 6-1 this year when she tallies at least 10 kills.
Joining Beal with double-figure kills for the Hornets were juniors Eryn Kirby (15 kills, nine digs) and Kelsey Elston (12 kills, 10 blocks), and sophomore Janelle Currey (14 kills, 22 digs). The quartet combined for 61 of Sacramento State’s 67 kills, and the team’s .222 hitting percentage was the best mark in 11 matches.
The double-double for Elston was the first of her career, and the 10 blocks matched her personal best. Already second in the Big Sky in blocks, Elston improved her season average to 1.21 per set. She was one of three Hornets with double-doubles as Currey recorded her conference-leading 13th of the year, and setter Katie Aprile posted her fifth double-double with 30 assists and 11 digs. Junior libero Breanne Menees posted a team-best 24 digs.
Sacramento State posted more kills (67-50), assists (64-45), digs (89-87) and team blocks (13.0-11.0) than Idaho State. In addition, the Bengals hit just .098 as no ISU player hit better than .208.
The Bengals were led by Haylee Thompson-Brock’s 14 kills, 13 digs and six blocks, while Jaclyn Hone led all players with 26 digs.
Fans that attend tomorrow afternoon’s homecoming football game against Northern Colorado at 2 p.m. can use their ticket stub from that game to gain free admission into tomorrow evening’s volleyball match.