(Photo: Zac Pacleb/WCSN)
After splitting the first two matches of the season, Arizona State swept its final match of the weekend against Abilene Christian University 25-21, 25-21, 25-18 behind senior outside hitter Maya McClendon’s efficient performance.
McClendon helped the Sun Devils establish their early first set lead. She tallied five kills on her first seven attempts to put them in front 15-13.
ASU would push its lead up to four, as the score moved to 21-17. However, seven of the Wildcats 17 points came from ASU attack errors.
Despite ACU hanging close, freshman outside hitter Ivana Jeremic closed out the set with a kill, and the Sun Devil won set one 25-21.
Opening up the second set the Sun Devils’ offense flashed their dominance as two straight kills from senior outside hitter Cassidy Pickrell gave them a 10-3 lead.
ASU would maintain a lead, and the offense facilitated through multiple hands, including Jeremic and McClendon as it went up 16-11.
A surge from the Wildcats and junior right side Corinne Grandcolas gave them an 18-17 lead.
However, the Sun Devils were able to fend off the late push from Grandcolas and ACU and reclaim the lead, scoring five of the last six points in the match and winning the set by a score of 25-21.
The third set followed the same story line as the other two as the Sun Devils jumped out to an early 8-3 lead forcing the Wildcats to call a timeout.
The lead would hover around five points as McClendon notched a couple more kills, and ASU would go up 18-12.
The Sun Devils would not look back and they grabbed the win 25-18.
McClendon would finish the day with 13 kills on 28 attempts, with only two errors, good for a hitting percentage of .393. She was helped out by sophomore setter Kylie Pickrell who facilitated the offense well.
Six players found themselves with double-digit attempts, and K. Pickrell finished with 34 assists on the afternoon.
The Sun Devils head out to Iowa next weekend for their second preseason tournament.
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