After defeating No. 1 seeded Penn State in dominant fashion in the national semifinals, many thought that the Oregon Ducks may have the upper hand against the Texas Longhorns in the National Title Match. Unfortunately, Texas blew that theory out of the water early, and dominated the Ducks in every facet of the game en route to a sweep and a National Championship.
Texas showed their dominance from the first serve. The Longhorns got out to a 3-0 lead in the first set, ultimately winning, 25-11. Texas controlled the net, with seven blocks in the first set alone (the Ducks would get one for the entire match). Alaina Bergsma had zero kills, and Oregon actually finished with a negative hitting percentage for the set.
The second set went a lot better for the Ducks, as Bergsma got off the snide on the very first point. The set was back-and-forth as the teams played to a 17-17 tie and, at 20-17, it looked as if the Ducks had taken control. Oregon continued to lead, 23-21, but Texas scored five of the last six to take the set, 26-24. By the third set, Texas got out to an early 10-6 lead and never looked back to finish off the sweep.
The final stats affirm Texas' dominance, as the Longhorns had a hitting percentage of .432 (to Oregon's .205), had 13 blocks to Oregon's one, and committed only three service errors to Oregon's seven.
Oregon loses five seniors from this roster, and it's going to be tough to get back to this level next season. Still, it's been an awesome ride that energized this program and made Oregon supporters fans of the game of volleyball. The Ducks have reached national contender status, now it's time to see if they can sustain it.
Thanks to the seniors: Bergsma, Haley Jacob, Bethany Bair, Kellie Kawasaki, and Kat Fischer. You have taken this program to the next level, and are leaving it in good hands.