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Women’s volleyball splits weekend matches with San Jose State, Nevada

Junior+outside+hitter+Alexandra+Psoma+rises+for+a+spike+during+SDSU%27s+0-3+loss+to+Loyola+Marymount+on+September+8.
Junior outside hitter Alexandra Psoma rises for a spike during SDSU's 0-3 loss to Loyola Marymount on September 8.

Junior outside hitter Alexandra Psoma rises for a spike during SDSU's 0-3 loss to Loyola Marymount on September 8.

Photo by Weicheng Han

Photo by Weicheng Han

Junior outside hitter Alexandra Psoma rises for a spike during SDSU's 0-3 loss to Loyola Marymount on September 8.

by Sydney Northcutt, Staff Writer

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Fans at Aztec Court cheered louder and louder with every set point in the third set of San Diego State’s volleyball match against San Jose State on Thursday. 

For the record, there were five, with four ties in between, in what ended up being a 29-27 set win for SDSU.

The Aztecs would ultimately go on to lose the match in five sets (25-18, 23-25, 29-27, 16-25, 15-17) while beating University of Nevada, Reno on Saturday (25-19, 25-20, 25-16). SDSU is now 1-3 in conference play and 6-11 on the season. 

“We just try to keep our nerves calm, we bring it in tight after every play, calm each other down,” senior libero, Devyn Pritchard, said about the contentious third set.“Keep that cool confidence on the court and just play like it’s 0-0.”

The Scarlet and Black did just that as they got out to a fast start in the first set, putting up an 11-point lead against the Spartans.

SDSU gave SJSU little room for a comeback and put away the set, 25-18. 

The second set featured a highly competitive score, with the two teams trading off leads and sharing ties often. The beginning of the set featured many errors on behalf of the Aztecs, keeping the Spartans in the game and providing them with the opportunity to get ahead later in the stanza.

The tail end of the set was highlighted with numerous timeouts and momentum switches, ultimately falling in favor of the Spartans who won 25-23. 

“The reason we call timeouts is to switch momentum,” head coach Deitre Collins-Parker said, “We have to be better when the opposing team calls a timeout and we have to not allow that to go in their favor.”

SDSU held the lead for the majority of the third set, rebounding nicely from the second stanza and coming out to a quick 6-2 lead. The Aztecs still held the lead at 17-12, where San Jose took their first timeout and regained some of the momentum afterwards.

With a little help from SDSU errors SJSU was staged for a comeback. However, the Aztecs weren’t ready to give up the set and between 23-22 and 29-27 there were five set points, four ties, and three lead changes. SDSU took the thriller 29-27.

The Spartans came out with energy on their side in the fourth set, coming out to an early 4-1 lead. They maintained the momentum throughout the match, capitalizing on serve receive errors by the Aztecs and getting their opponents out of system.

Junior outside hitter Alexandra Psoma went down at 16-4 SJSU with an apparent ankle injury, giving SDSU the opportunity to either bounce back or crumble. The Scarlet and Black responded with a run of their own, taking back some of the momentum and creating a more competitive score at 9-16. However, the comeback proved to be too late as San Jose won, 25-16. 

The fifth and final set was competitive right out of the gate, with many crowd-engaging rallies thanks to lots of defensive plays.

SDSU had the match point at 14-12, but the Spartans put up their own match point at 15-14. However, SJSU would go on to take the set, 17-15, ending the match.

SDSU rebounded from its loss on Thursday with a three-set win over University of Nevada, Reno on Saturday (25-19, 25-20, 25-16). 

Senior outside hitter Alexis Cage led the charge with a match-high 12 kills, while Pritchard held down the back row with another match-high of 19 digs. Harris took command of the net, garnering five blocks and freshman setter Gabi People handed out a match high 34 assists. The Aztecs had a steady lead throughout all three sets and never opened the door for a UNR comeback. 

Despite the win on Saturday the Aztecs are not quite at where they want to be with a 1-3 record in conference play. 

“We can definitely see the level we can get to, but with that being said we have to be able to put together three good sets of being at our best,” Collins-Parker said, “I think when you’ve lost some games that becomes harder, so right now we’re learning to deal with adversity.” 

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