For the fifth time in five weeks, Arizona volleyball took down a ranked opponent, beating 25th-ranked USC in five sets at McKale Center on Wednesday night (25-23, 18-25, 22-25, 25-17, 15-7).
Arizona's victory over the Trojans secured a season sweep over USC for the first time since 2001. Arizona's five victories over ranked teams mark the most since 2009.
The Wildcats overcame a slow start to win the final two sets and take the victory in five sets. Arizona hit .084 in the first three sets before rebounding to hit .396 over the final two to help put it away.
“Certainly was a little dicey there in the beginning,” said head coach Dave Rubio. “I think we were able to, as the match went on, play a little bit sharper. But it was touch and go there for a while. I’m really proud on how we hung in there and stayed true to what we were trying to do every day, and that’s to just mentally stay in a match.”
Penina Snuka had 47 assists and 24 digs, her eighth consecutive double-double and 17th overall this season.
Kendra Dahlke led the Cats with 19 kills and missed a double-double by just one dig. Mau (15) and McKenzie Jacobson (10) had 10-or-more kills as well in the match.
Devyn Cross led Arizona with four blocks. The freshman added seven kills on .400 hitting as well.
With the win, Arizona is now 6-1 in the first game of a Pac-12 series. Now, Arizona will try to do what it has struggled to do this year: win game 2. The Cats are just 1-5 in the second game of Pac-12 week/weekends. Arizona welcomes No. 9 UCLA on Friday at 6 p.m. MST.
Overall, Arizona improved to 15-10 (7-6 Pac-12) on the season while the Trojans fell to 15-9 (7-6 Pac-12).
Arizona hosts No. 9 UCLA on Friday at 6 p.m. MST. Arizona is in search of its first season sweep of UCLA since 2011.
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