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Five-Set Comeback Win Completes Season Sweep of UCLA
Written by GoDucks.com    Friday, 15 November 2013 02:32   

EUGENE, Ore. – Oregon volleyball turned the tables on UCLA, Sunday, mounting a comeback from down two sets, fighting to stay alive with a third-set and swing the momentum in the Ducks’ favor as they rallied to win 13-25, 18-25, 27-25, 25-20, 15-9.

The match marked the first time Oregon (14-10, 7-7 Pac-12) has forced a fifth set this season after losing the first two sets.

Liz Brenner led the team with 27 kills, 21 of which came in the final three sets of the match. It marked the sixth time Brenner has surpassed 20 kills this season and is the second-highest total behind her 28 kills against Arizona. The junior also dug 14 balls for her 10th double-double of the season.

With the exception of scoring the first five points of the match, the first two sets were dominated by UCLA. The Bruins called a timeout to slow down the Oregon offense at 5-0 in the first set which started the string of strong defense at the net for the home team, tallying six blocks in the first set alone. Nothing seemed to go in the Ducks’ favor the remainder of the set as UCLA stormed to a 25-13 win.

UCLA led from start-to-finish in the second set. The Ducks drew no closer than 9-11 and finished at a seven-point deficit, 18-25.

The Ducks were on the brink of suffering two-consecutive sweeps during the road trip and dropping two matches below .500 in conference play, a place Oregon has not been this season. But with the match, and arguably the postseason in jeopardy, the Ducks kept fighting.

The third set was as gritty of a fight the team has seen all season with 18 ties and eight lead changes throughout. Neither team led by more than two points the entire set. Oregon had the first advantage with set point at 24-23 but out of a UCLA timeout the Bruins scored consecutive points on back-to-back kills for a match point of their own.

But the pendulum swung back to Oregon which scored three-straight points to win 27-25.

Brenner, who had six kills in the first two sets combined, came up big with 10 kills in the third set alone.

Oregon led for a majority of the fourth set, keeping the Bruins at arm’s length. A 6-0 run put Oregon up 10-4 and while UCLA made a run to come within 14-16, an Oregon timeout calmed the attack and straightened the Ducks to a 25-20 win, forcing a fifth set.

After the two teams matched points until 3-3 in the fifth set, Oregon took off with an 8-1 run to go up 11-4, securing control to a 15-9 win.

Lauren Plum returned to her All-American ways with 56 assists, 13 digs and five kills for her eighth double-double of the season.

Amanda Benson led the team in digs (23) while Canace Finley led the team in blocks with three assists and two solos.

Ariana Williams provided a consistent offensive threat for Oregon as she finished with 15 kills and hit .324.

While not as dramatic, Oregon came back to win 3-1 against UCLA in the two teams’ first meeting this season in Eugene. The two-match sweep of the Bruins is the first for the Ducks since 2008.

Oregon will be at home against No. 6 Stanford, Thursday and No. 22 California, Friday. Both of those matches are slated for 6 p.m., starts and will air live on the Pac-12 Networks.

 

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