No. 3 Seed Cal Matches Program Wins Record
STANFORD – The third-seeded California beach volleyball team (26-8) topped sixth-seeded Arizona State (11-12) 3-0 in the first round of the Pac-12 Championship on Wednesday afternoon. It was the Golden Bears’ 26th victory of the season, tying the program’s win record set last year.
It’s the first time since 2018 that Cal has won its opening-round matchup to remain in the winner’s bracket.
No. 3 Cal 3, No. 6 ASU 0
It only took the Bears three matches to clinch the dual as the No. 1, No. 3 and No. 5 pairs got the job done in straight sets. The No. 2 and No. 4 pairs both held leads as well but did not finish.
After trading sideouts in the early going, the court-five pair of junior Brooke Buchner and sophomore Alex Young-Gomez broke away to take the first set 21-10. Just a moment later, junior Maya Gessner and freshman Gia Fisher snagged the first frame on court three 24-22 after staving off multiple set points in the Sun Devils’ favor.
Buchner and Young-Gomez secured the first point of the dual, taking the second set 21-17. The win marked the 60th victory in Buchner’s career, which is good for eighth on the program’s all-time wins list.
Gessner and Fisher were just a few rallies behind their court five teammates and took the second frame 21-16 to put the Bears up 2-0 in the dual. Gessner secured the final point at the net with a block
Junior Liz Waters-Leiga and sophomore Sierra Caffo were the next to start and finish, earning a 21-18, 21-15 win on court one to seal the dual. They are now 16-8 in their debut season with the Bears and have eight wins in the top spot.
1 Sierra Caffo and Liz Waters-Leiga (Cal) def. Lexi Sweeney and Kylie Wickley (ASU) 21-18 21-15
2 Ashley Delgado and Ainsley Radell (Cal) vs. Anya Pemberton and Ivey Weber (ASU) 21-10 8-3
3 Maya Gessner and Gia Fisher (Cal) def. Carys Thomas and Rylie Kael (ASU) 24-22 21-16
4 Lexi McKeown and Ella Dreibholz (Cal) vs. Sarah Waters and Taryn Ames (ASU) 21-17 12-9
5 Brooke Buchner and Alex Young-Gomez (Cal) Kate Fitzgerald and Adri Nieves Papaleo (ASU) 21-10, 21-17
Order of finish: 5,3,1
The tourney continues Thursday morning at 8:30 a.m. PT as the Bears face the reigning national champion and second-seeded USC. A win against the Trojans would put Cal directly into Friday’s semifinal round. A loss would drop the team into an elimination match…
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