ASU women's volleyball falls to No. 21 Colorado in five sets

The Sun Devils fall to the Buffaloes after having a 2-1 lead marking their 18th straight loss

The ASU women’s volleyball team (10-20, 0-18 Pac-12) failed to end its 17-game losing streak on Saturday, falling in five sets to No. 21 Colorado (21-8, 11-7 Pac-12).

The night started off strong for the Sun Devils, when junior middle blocker Carmen Unzue quickly notched two kills. And while the home Buffaloes remained neck and neck with the Sun Devils until midway through the set, a service error by freshman setter Brynna DeLuzio and kill by ASU sophomore outside hitter Ivana Jeremic sparked a fire in the Sun Devils, allowing a 4-0 run to a substantial lead.

Colorado responded with two consecutive kills, but did not gain momentum until two back-to-back errors by the Sun Devils gave the Buffaloes the lead. The Sun Devils did not falter however, battling back to a 28-26 victory in the first set following kills by freshman outside hitter Griere Hughes, junior opposite hitter Peyton Grahovac and senior middle blocker Oluoma Okaro.

Both teams exchanged leads in the opening minutes of the second set. It wasn’t until Colorado went on a 3-0 run midway through the period that the Buffaloes gained momentum. 

The Sun Devils struggled to remain within reach of the Buffs from that point on, at one point allowing Colorado to go on a 6-1 run. Following a kill by junior middle blocker Naghede Abu, the Buffs stole the second set, 25-16.

The third set was a game of runs for both teams. The Buffaloes looked as though they were going to put the Sun Devils in a deep deficit once again after going on a 6-2 run. But the Sun Devils rode a six point run of their own to a small lead.

With neither team holding the momentum, the game remained close until a kill put the Buffaloes at a 24-23 lead. The Sun Devils, who had been in this position before, did not falter in their gameplan and were able to earn three points, including two blocks by Jeremic to close out the set 26-24.

In the fourth set, the Sun Devils got off to a rocky start once again as they fell behind early. Despite the deficit, ASU managed to climb back and take a small lead. Colorado responded with three unanswered points, but the Sun Devils once again would not go down without a fight. 

With the blocking forces of Unzue and Jeremic, the Sun Devils were able to tie the Buffaloes midway through the set. A three-kill run by the Sun Devils allowed them to pull ahead by three points. The fourth set continued to play out much like the third, with both teams tying late. Following a kill by Joslyn Hayes, the Buffaloes went on a 3-0 run to steal the fourth set 25-23.

In the fifth and final set, the Devils fell into a 4-1 deficit early on. With kills by Okaro and Hughes, ASU was able to tie things up midway, but following an error by Hughes, the Buffaloes made two kills, an ace and a block. 

While the Sun Devils pulled within three following an error by Colorado, ASU's hopes of breaking their losing streak were halted after a block by the Buffalo pushed Colorado to a 15-11 victory.

This loss marked their 18th straight – the Sun Devils' longest losing streak in program history. 

ASU will continue its road trip as they travel to Pullman, WA. to take on Washington State on Wednesday, Nov. 22 at 8 p.m.


Reach the reporter at klbroder@asu.edu or follow @KellyB1459 on Twitter.

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