With three Bronco players scoring double-digit kills, the Santa Clara's volleyball team defeated previously-unbeaten Utah 3-2 Friday morning at UC Davis. The Broncos are 5-0 and Utah is 5-1. The set scores were 21-25, 25-21, 20-25, 25-20 and 18-16.
Santa Clara will play UNC, picked as the runner-up in the Atlantic Coast Conference, tonight at 5 pm.
"Utah is really good. They have two really good outside hitters and a really good middle. I felt our blocking schemes worked and we got good deflections at the right time, especially in game five," said Bronco head coach Jon Wallace. "They are starting to trust each other and believe. They feel really comfortable with each other. They are buying into the process and they are excited to be on the court together. We have great chemistry as a team and with the coaches. They are calm and they know what they want to do on the court."
Taylor Milton hit a sparkling .405 with a team-high 20 kills (5 e, 37 att.) to lead the Broncos comeback, after going down 2-1 to the Utes. She also scooped up a match-high 13 digs and three service aces. Katherine Douglas had 12 kills (7 e, 31 att.) with 10 digs. Lexi Williamson had 10 kills (4 e, 22 att.), hitting .273 with four digs.
Running the 6-2, setters Alyssa Anderson (29 ast., 5 digs) and Chelsea Heier (23 ast., 7 digs) helped the team hit .252 in the match. Katy Schatzman had 12 digs. Haley Cameron hit .300 with 8 kills (2 e, 20 att.), two block solos and four block assists. Kayla Lommori also stepped up and blocked well with 1 block solo and five block assists.
"Taylor was fired up and she wanted to dominate today," said Wallace. "The setters did a really nice job getting the offense going. Haley and Megan played very active and did a lot of good things for us. They got a lot of touch blocks. Their size helped us a lot. Near the end of the match she had two match points and she got the second one. Katy also played well."
The Broncos hit .252 with 62 kills (26 e, 143 att.). They added 60 assists, 11 service aces, 17 service errors, 54 digs and 10 team blocks. The Utes hit .225 with 53 kills (22 e, 138 att.). They added 46 assists, eight service aces, 11 service errors, 46 digs and 10 team blocks.
Lacey Maas went down with an ankle sprain the second point of the game and won't be able to play again this weekend. Wallace said depth is now an issue, but expects the team to continue to step up in all areas. "I don't know how we will do tonight," said Wallace. "We are thin. Everybody is playing that is here. They gave a lot here this morning so it's hard to say. We play at five and need to be ready to go against North Carolina because they will be ready for us."