Oregon defeats Miami in NCAA Tournament, will play Michigan Friday night
The Oregon Ducks continued their winning ways on the road, beating the Miami (Ohio) RedHawks 3 sets to 1 (25-22, 25-17, 22-25, 25-19) Thursday night in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Sophomore outside hitter Lindsey Vander Weide led the Ducks with 18 kills, and freshman middle blocker Ronika Stone added a season-high 16 kills in her first career postseason match.
“In the beginning I wanted every hit to be a kill, and that’s not possible,” Stone said to reporters after the match. “I want to come out with that same mentality every time.”
Sophomore setter August Raskie completed her ninth double-double of the year with 26 assists and 10 digs to help the Ducks advance to the second round for the first time since 2014.
The Ducks and RedHawks battled in a contested opening set. The Ducks took a 2-1 lead but then either tied or trailed by one or two points until the Ducks took a 13-12 lead on a RedHawks error. That sparked a 5-0 run by the RedHawks to give them a 17-13 advantage, but the Ducks scored 6 out of the last 9 points to take the first set.
“They want it real bad,” head coach Jim Moore said. “When you want it real bad, you have to figure out how to stay focused on what you’re doing rather than worrying about the outcome.”
In the second set, the Ducks again played from behind until they tied the match at 11. The Ducks then took a 16-12 lead and never trailed the rest of the set to take a 2-0 set lead in the best-of-five match.
Looking for the sweep in the third set the Ducks were again playing from behind, trailing by as many as six when they began to rally. The Ducks used a 6-1 run to get within 22-21 but the RedHawks scored three out of four to close out set three and force a fourth set.
The RedHawks, looking to force a fifth set, scored three in a row to start the set, but the Ducks battled back to tie the set at 6 and tied it again at 15. The Ducks used a 10-4 run to put the RedHawks away for good and send Oregon to a second-round matchup with the Wolverines.
The Ducks and the Michigan Wolverines play in round two Friday night at 4:30 pm in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Follow Zak Laster on Twitter: @zlast3445
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