The #5 Oregon Ducks faced the #19 Arizona State Sun Devils today at Matthew Knight Arena, and were swept 25-27, 18-25, 19-25.
The Ducks started the first set with a marginal lead, but a 6-1 ASU run put the Sun Devils up 10-7.
Oregon battled back to tie the set at 19-all, but was not able to overtake the Sun Devils.
The first set would turn out to be Oregon’s best effort. In the second and third sets, Oregon errors combined with razor-sharp attacks from ASU translated into a hit percentage of .029 in the second set and .100 in the third.
Also, Arizona State is one of the few teams that Oregon has faced that blocked better than the Ducks.
There was not much that was encouraging on the part pf the Ducks. Oregon fell short in all facets of the game: serve/receive, defense, blocking, and offense.
Oregon ended their day hitting .127 with 6 team blocks. ASU hit .230 with 10 team blocks.
Mimi Colyer was the only Ducks with double-digit kills with 11. Hannah Pukis had 29 assists and was the digs leader with 13.
The Ducks are now 0-2 in conference play against ranked opponents. Regardless of ranking, in all the the conference matches that Oregon has played thus far, they’ve come out slow in the first set and that has worked against them. Against unranked Pac-12 teams, they’ve been able to battle back, but were not able to do so against Washington State, and now Arizona State.
Oregon (16-3, 6-2 Pac-12) is now tied for third in the Pac-12 standings. Said head coach Matt Ulmer after the game, “(Arizona State) just outplayed us in every facet of the game. I think there’s a lot of things we can learn from this, and I hope it’s something that we can take forward.”
The Ducks will need to find solutions to what ails them sooner rather than later. This coming weekend they will host California and then a Stanford team that is atop the Pac-12 rankings. If Oregon comes out flat and has not found solutions to their problems of the past two weekends, they have no hope of defeating Stanford.
Here are coach Ulmer and Mimi Colyer’s observations after the game: