No. 20 Oregon volleyball flexes its depth in sweep of No. 10 Washington State

Oregon volleyball played against one of the best defensive teams in the nation on Sunday in No. 10 Washington State, but it was the Ducks who looked more complete team. The Ducks sent Washington State packing after a three-set sweep (25-21, 25-10, 25-14).

Coming off a frustrating loss to No. 8 Washington on Friday, the Ducks needed a turnaround against WSU.

The Ducks did just that.

“The loss was really tough. We came out really aggressive,” junior Taylor Agost said. “Everyone was ready to go [for the match against Washington State] and the focus was really good.”

Oregon came flying out the gates and controlled the tempo of the match from the very start. This season for the Ducks, Lindsey Vander Weide has been a key player for Oregon in terms of earning points. Against the Cougars, she earned seven kills, but she was not the only one to grab points. Oregon had six players earn five or more kills in the match.

“A lot of people contributed, even those who [did not play],” head coach Jim Moore said.

Agost and freshman Jolie Rasmussen each earned nine kills for Oregon while Agost hit .409 percent. Oregon’s attack came from all over the court, but Moore once again said the team needs believe in itself if the Ducks want to have a successful season.

“We have to stop wanting to be the underdog,” Moore said. “We’ve got to start accepting the fact that [we’re] good and people expect you to win.”

Oregon showcased its offensive depth in this win but also showed off its defensive strength. Lauren Page had standout game with seven kills in 10 total attacks, but her defense in front of the net might have been her most impressive statistic as the sophomore made six of the team’s eight total blocks.

Along with the eight total blocks for Oregon, the Ducks made 39 digs as a team compared to the 25 made by Washington State. It was an overall impressive team performance against a team who could punish the Ducks for offensive blunders.

“Every silly hit we hit, they blocked,” Moore said. “We had to hit really, really well but every mistake we made, they blocked.”

Of the six players with five or more kills, three were freshmen.

Rasmussen, Ronika Stone and Willow Johnson had strong performances again for Oregon, which only further proves that the Ducks’ roster had depth across the board.

“This is the closest team I’ve ever played on,” Agost said. “We’re all really good friends and I think that helps.”

Follow Shawn Meadow on Twitter @ShawnMedow

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Shawn Medow

Shawn Medow

Shawn is an associate sports editor and reporter for the Emerald covering football, men's basketball, women's basketball, acrobatics and tumbling, track and field/cross-country and softball. He also hosts several podcasts, including a soccer podcast, on the Emerald Podcast Network. You can contact him at [email protected] or on Twitter @ShawnMedow.