On Senior Night at Matthew Knight Arena, tonight’s match was all Oregon. They delivered, in convincing fashion, completely sweeping aside the Oregon State Beavers, 25-13, 25-14, 25-9.
Oregon has been spectacular in Matthew Knight Arena this season, and has not lost a regular season game here for the first time ever! The exclamation point on the season came, unfortunately for OSU, at the expense of a Beavers team that was never ever in this match.
Oregon State tried, but was not able to match early Duck attacks. They were briefly gifted a lead, 5-6, on a Ducks service error, but the Ducks pulled ahead afterwards. OSU came to within three, 12-9 (on another Oregon service error), but the Ducks went on a 9-1 run that put the Beavers away for the set.
Oregon State could not compete, and the first set went to the Ducks.
As was the case in the first set, the second set featured a tradeoff of points where, due to some Oregon errors and a positive burst of attacks from the Beavers, the Ducks were down 6-7.
And then, much like the first set, Oregon hit the gas. Kills by Kiari Robey, Gloria Mutiri, and Mimi Colyer led to a 9-1 run that left the Beavers wondering what exactly knocked them down. OSU was only able to get within eight before the Ducks firmly put the set to rest by 11.
Oregon State was reeling, and it certainly showed in the third set. The Ducks marched to a 12-1 advantage and there was nothing that the Beavers were going to be able to do to keep up on Senior Night.
OSU tried to keep pace but their defense was not up to the task of fighting off what the Ducks were throwing at them.
Oregon served phenomenally tonight - clearly the best that they’ve served all season - so it was fitting that the match ended on Elise Agi service ace:
Brooke Nuneviller and Mimi Colyer were the kill leaders tonight with 11 apiece. Gloria Mutiri was fantastic with 9 kills and a .615 H%. Karson Bacon hit 6 kills for .455 and Kiari Robey hit 3 kills for .500, and those number are hardly insignificant.
Hannah Pukis served up 35 assists in this short game, along with 8 digs. And I can’t say enough about Georgia Murphy - her team lead of 9 digs may not seem impressive. I’m here to tell you that they all count. This machine operates as it does because the Ducks have a stellar libero.
Oregon’s service line was pinball numbers tonight - 14 service aces on 7 service errors. Incredible.
The Ducks hit .410 on the match to .068 for OSU. .068! I don’t have an analogy for that!
The 2022 Ducks finish their regular season on a 13-game win streak (the highest since 2012), and set a record with their 17th conference win.
You may have heard me talk about comparisons between this team and the 2012 team, which I also covered. (If you have not, the take a listen to hythloday’s podcast with me, here.) That team was special. This team is just as special, even as their character and play is different. This is a team that can go very deep in NCAA play. How deep? Well, that 2012 team reached the finals...that’s not my litmus test with this team, but I expect that this squad will go deep in this year’s tournament.