For the first time in 16 years, Weber State women’s volleyball has come up with a victory over Portland State on the road in Portland, Oregon. The five-set win over the Vikings also has put the Wildcats on a five-match winning streak.
“Portland State played inspired volleyball and gave us everything we could handle,” said head coach Jeremiah Larsen. “They had a lot of grit and really competed at a high level. We didn’t respond with the proper consistent effort. This is the area we have to get better at if we want to be an elite program.”
The Wildcats started out slow in the first set by falling to the Vikings, 25-21. After the first-set loss, Weber State pounded out to a 7-2 lead in the second set. That early jump was enough because Portland State never once tied or took the lead in the second set.
WSU went on a 5-1 streak to end the second set. A kill by Rylin Roberts and another by Kenney Redd, with the help of a service ace by Aubrey Saunders-Adams, gave WSU the 25-15 second-set win.
Weber State started out trailing early in the third set, but it wasn’t by much and it wasn’t for long. Everything got all tied up at 10-10, and then with a kill by Redd took an 11-10 lead. WSU came up with the biggest run of the match in the third set, which was 11-2. WSU was just two points away from claiming the set, and Saunders-Adams had a kill and Redd came up with a big block to give WSU the 25-20 third-set victory.
WSU now had a two set to one lead going into the fourth set. Portland State jumped to a 14-6 lead early in the fourth set. After PSU pushed the score deficit to 10, Weber State couldn’t gain any momentum and fell in the fourth set, 25-18.
For back-to-back matches, Weber State went into a full five-set match. The fifth set, WSU trailed 6-4 early. Roberts started some momentum for WSU with a nice kill. Sam Schiess added another kill, and Roberts and Saunders-Adams didn’t allow anything past the net with a block to give WSU an 8-6 lead.
To finish the match off, Megan Gneiting had a kill followed by a service ace by Andrea Hale. With the fifth set at match point, Gneiting and Hannah Hill-DeYoung powered down a block to give the Wildcats the five-set win.
Weber State was led by Hill-DeYoung, who had 15 kills from 28 attacks with only one error for an even .500 on the night. Roberts had an impressive night with 12 kills and 22 digs. Gneiting also had a double-double with 12 kills and 15 digs.
Ashlyn Power had 53 assists and 20 digs, while Helena Khouri had 23 digs to lead WSU.
Weber State finished the night with 64 kills and a .206 percentage. For the second time this season, the Wildcats racked up more than 100 digs in a match-ending tonight with 101.
WSU is now 11-5 overall on the season and sitting at 6-1 in Big Sky Conference play. WSU remains on the road and will take on Sacramento State on Saturday, Oct. 13, at 8 p.m. MT.