Fresno State Falls In The First Of Two Idaho Matches 3-1
Nov. 17, 2005
Moscow, Idaho - The Bulldogs stormed out of the gate, taking a 30-24 win in the first game against Idaho on Thursday night, but lost the next three games, falling to Idaho 30-24, 25-30, 23-30, 25-30. Alison Pitton led the Bulldogs on the night with 14 kills, and Kasie Spencer contributed as well, making 12 kills on .385 hitting.
The Bulldogs came out quickly against the Vandals, taking an early 7-1 lead in the first game, which they parlayed into a relatively easy 30-24 win. The Bulldogs limited Idaho to .000 hitting in the first game, while making two aces of their own and creating four blocks in the first game.
Fresno State was not as fortunate in the remaining three games, where the Vandals improved their hitting, particularly in the second game, where the Vandals hit .386 on the way to the win, just out-pacing Fresno State's .273 hitting in game two. Erin Curtis led the way for Idaho, making 17 kills on 27 attempts with five errors.
Defensively, the Bulldogs were led by libero Yuko Mori, who recorded 22 digs and 3 service aces on the night. In addition, senior setter Robyn Keune reached another milestone, making 52 assists and moving into third among all Fresno State setters in career assists.
"It was nice to see Yuko (Mori) recover from a tough Nevada match with one of her better matches of the season defensively," said head coach Ruben Nieves. "It was also nice to see Kasie Spencer respond well with great offensive attacking."
The Bulldogs wrap up their regular season with one more road match, traveling to Boise on Saturday to face the Broncos of Boise State. Fresno State won the last matchup between the two teams, a 3-0 win in Fresno on Nov. 3. Following that match, the Bulldogs will go to Reno for the WAC tournament, where they will be the No. 7 seed.
Game 1 Recap - Alisha McKee opened the game with a kill for the Bulldogs, and Fresno State used keen eyesight on some Idaho attacks landing just out of bounds to spark an early run, taking a 7-1 lead before a quick timeout from Idaho. The streak continued for one more point with a Robyn Keune kill, but an Alisha McKee serve landed just long to help the Vandals to the serve. Idaho made a run of their own, but an ace by Yuko Mori helped spark another Fresno State rally as team took a four straight points to take a 14-5 lead. Idaho refused to give in, and Sarah Loney recorded two kills, helping Idaho pull within three at 15-12. The Bulldogs scored six of the next nine points, capped off by an Alison Pitton kill to take a 21-15 lead. Idaho continued to keep in reach of the Bulldogs, staying three points behind at 23-20, and cutting the lead to two after an Andrea Fox kill at 25-23. The Bulldogs got the sideout they needed with an Alisha McKee kill, and grabbed the next two points to take a 28-23 lead on the way to a 30-24 win in game one.
Game 2 Recap - Idaho took the first two points in game two, and took an early 6-3 lead after a kill from Sarah Loney. Idaho continued to press their advantage, taking an 11-6 lead before the Bulldogs capitalized on a blocking error to regain the serve. After exchanging sideouts, the Bulldogs cut the lead back one with a Kasie Spencer kill, but Idaho continued to hold the lead, and extended it to 18-11 following a kill by Amanda Bowman. The Bulldogs stayed even with the Vandals for the rest of the game, and made a late run to cut the lead back to two at 27-25. In the end though, the Idaho lead was too much, as the team took a 30-25 win in game two.
Game 3 Recap - The teams started game three by exchanging points, but Idaho was the team to take early advantage, opening up a 6-1 lead. Fresno State returned the favor though, scoring four straight points to bring back the lead to one, and Fresno State tied the game at seven after a kill and a solo block from Kasie Spencer. Fresno State miscues contributed to another Vandal run, as Idaho took a 15-9 lead into a Fresno State timeout. The Vandals continued to convert opportunities provided by the Bulldogs and extended a 23-14 lead. Fresno State began a run of their own, scoring seven of the next eight points to cut the lead to three behind the arms of Kasie Spencer and Angela Wiggins, who each had two kills. An ace by Yuko Mori cut the lead to two points at 25-23, but Idaho closed out the rest of the game with the help of some lucky bounces took game three 30-23.
Game 4 Recap - Fresno State returned the favor of the previous two games, using two aces from Jessica Peterson and two kills from Alison Pitton to take a quick 6-1 lead in the fourth game. The Vandals cut into the lead slowly, but more consistent hitting from the Bulldogs helped them maintain their lead, closing the first half of the game at 15-10. Idaho cut the gap to 15-13 after two Alisha McKee attacks sailed long, but she redeemed herself in the next series for the Bulldogs, completing a kill to move the Bulldog lead to 18-13. The Vandals cut the lead back to within five again at 20-17, and moved closed before a Jessica Peterson kill allowed the Bulldogs to keep their lead at 21-19. Continuing to press, Idaho tied the Bulldogs at 22, but Alisha McKee kept the Bulldogs ahead with a kill, as Fresno State kept the service advantage. Idaho took the next two points to get their first lead of the game, and held on despite a tough Bulldogs attack to win the final game 30-25.