STANFORD, Calif. – Washington earned its highest-ever seeding to the Pac-12 Beach Volleyball Championships this year, but the Beach Dawgs saw their run ended by defending national champion USC in the contender’s bracket today at Stanford. The Huskies had gone through Utah in a sweep to start the day, and had their chances against the Trojans, but converted too few.
Washington will have to wait until Sunday morning at 8 a.m. Pacific time to learn its fate for the 2023 NCAA Championships, as the Huskies will hope for an at-large bid, which would be the program’s first. Seventeen teams make the tournament, with nine automatic bids and eight at-large selections.
The Huskies went into this tournament ranked 13th in the AVCA Coaches Poll, the spot it has held for several weeks in a row. Both of UW’s losses this week came to Top-10 teams (No. 8 Stanford; No. 3 USC) presumably assured of selection for the championships. Fourteen of UW’s fifteen losses this year came to ranked teams, with twelve of those losses against Top-10 teams.
Match 1 vs. Utah
The Beach Dawgs survive and advance! 3?-0? over the Utes.
Washington will now face 3rd-ranked USC in another elimination match.
Originally scheduled for 3:30pm but will be starting late#GrittyByNature pic.twitter.com/SCs5bJw8yn
— Washington Beach Volleyball (@UW_BeachVB) April 27, 2023
The Huskies needed to take care of business against a dangerous Utah team in order to get one more shot at one of the Pac-12’s top-four seeds. Washington came out prepared and earned a 3-0 victory, highlighted by a three-set comeback at the No. 4 spot.
Today the No. 2 and No. 4 matches were on court first. At the second spot, Piper Monk-Heidrich and Kendall Mather established themselves early in each set and easily defeated Utah’s Vezzani/Karich, 21-10, 21-11. But Utah’s Pitzak/Koch earned a 21-19 first set win on four against Mary Sinclair and Teagan DeFalco. With Utah trying to get a split of the opening two matches, DeFalco and Sinclair rallied back for a 21-16 second set win, and then jumped ahead quickly and won set three, 15-7, to put the Dawgs in charge at 2-0.
Chloe Loreen and Natalie Robinson then quickly…
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