Volleyball, after dropping first two sets, stuns West Virginia in 3-2 comeback victory


Aaron Tolentino

Senior outside hitter Hannah Turnlund (7) and sophomore outside hitter (21) celebrate an Aztec point during the Aztecs’ 3-2 comeback victory over West Virginia on Sept. 6 at Peterson Gym.

by Sophia Torres, Contributor

San Diego State sophomore outside hitter Victoria O’Sullivan celebrated her 19th birthday, but that’s not the only thing she celebrated on Friday night.

O’Sullivan received a gift of an Aztec 3-2 comeback victory over West Virginia, along with a career high of 22 kills.

“It’s definitely rewarding putting in all this work and then finally getting a comeback (win),” O’Sullivan said.

SDSU lost the first two sets and were down 22-20 in the third set, with the Mountaineers needing only three points to seal the victory.

However, the Aztecs refused to bow down.

Then came five straight Aztec points to win SDSU its first of three consecutive sets (25-22, 25-16, 15-13) and complete the comeback victory.

Despite losing some confidence in the second set, head coach Deitre Collins-Parker said the team gained belief and faith that it could ultimately pull off the comeback.

“Looking at our faces in game three, you could see that they were confident,” Collins-Parker said. “I think we lost confidence in game two. After the break, we came back and regrouped and played like (what) we’re capable of.”

The team’s comeback might not have been achieved without the chance to regroup after the first two sets and senior outside hitter Hannah Turnlund’s non-stop action.

From the first buzzer of the night to the last, Turnlund never left the court and was a starting player for every set. She notched her third double-double (19 kills, 10 digs) in four games.

Turnlund said she pushed through and gave her all for her team despite not resting a single play.

“It’s mostly based on adrenaline,” Turnlund said “You get to some point where you can only train so hard and then it’s all heart –what you put into it, you get out of it.”

After a timeout from SDSU with a lead of 14-13, Turnlund made her 19th kill to secure the win and end the fifth and final set.

Collins-Parker said Turnlund has been looking forward for a signature moment like this since she first stepped on the Mesa her freshman year.

“Hannah’s been waiting to be this person for four years,” Collins-Parker said. “She’s always been able to (do it), and it’s nice to see her get into her own.”

Even with all the excitement over their win tonight, the Aztecs still have a doubleheader tomorrow against Arkansas and Arizona to look forward to.

“No, I’m not tired,” Turnlund said with a laugh. “I have two more games to play tomorrow.”