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The ASU volleyball team began its season on the right track this weekend by capturing the ASU Sheraton Classic title.

The Sun Devils finished the tournament 2-1 and won the tiebreaker because of their victory against South Carolina Friday.

The Sun Devils captured the tournament victory on Saturday after sweeping Dayton in straight sets 25-18, 25-19, and 28-26.

Sophomore outside hitter Sarah Reaves led the Sun Devil attack collecting 17 kills while her teammate, senior outside hitter Margie Giordano, chipped in 13.

Junior setter Marina Mercer ran the efficient Sun Devil offense to perfection, chipping in with 35 assists.

Reaves and Mercer also anchored the scrappy Sun Devil defense, tallying 10 digs each.

ASU started the match with a nearly flawless attack in the first two sets and easily dominated the Flyers. But Dayton pushed back hard in the third set, which featured 14 ties and eight lead changes.

The Flyers held a dominant advantage when they grabbed a 22-18 point lead. But ASU managed to fight its way back and send the match into extra points before Reaves ended it with a kill to lead the Sun Devils to a 28-26 victory and the tournament title.

The Sun Devils kicked off their season at the Sheraton Classic Friday with a three-game sweep over the South Carolina Gamecocks winning 25-20, 25-17 and 25-21.

Reaves put on a dominating performance, posting 16 kills and 16 digs.

However, ASU’s second opponent Friday proved to be much more challenging. The 2007 Mountain West Conference Champion UNLV defeated the Sun Devils in four sets 25-19, 20-25, 25-19 and 25-23.

The weekend marked the debut of ASU’s first-year coach Jason Watson and six freshmen. The debut went well for both Watson and the freshman as ASU started the season on a winning note and four of the six first-year players saw significant playing time.

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