No. 19 Houston Volleyball Defeats No. 22 USC in Home Opener


Written by MAi'Ghen Storm | Photo credit: Oscar Herrera-SFL Staff Photographer

The No. 19 University of Houston Volleyball team defeated No. 22 USC in four sets (25-16, 23-25, 25-22, 25-20) on Friday night at the Fertitta Center in front of a record-breaking crowd of 1,904 fans.

The Cougars were led by graduate Kenna Sauer, who had a match-high 18 kills and 14 digs. Graduate Morgan Janda tallied a double-double with 21 assists and 15 digs.

Houston (1-0) won its 15th consecutive home match, dating back to the home opener last season. The four-set win was the Cougars' first against USC (0-1) in the series history and the team improved to 64-6 when holding an opponent to under a .199 hitting efficiency under Head Coach David Rehr.

Sauer, who was making her Cougar debut, had a dominant performance. She hit .311 with no errors and also had three blocks and an ace. Janda was also impressive, distributing the ball evenly and setting up her teammates for success.

The Cougars took the first set 25-16 and led for most of the second set before USC rallied to tie the match at 23-23. Houston eventually won the set 25-23.

The third set was another close one, with the teams tied 17 times. Houston went on a 4-1 run to take a 7-4 lead, but USC responded with a 4-1 run of their own to take a 12-10 lead. The Cougars eventually tied the set at 20-20, but USC won the final two points to take the set 25-22.

Houston took control of the fourth set early, taking a 10-4 lead. USC closed the gap to 19-15, but the Cougars held on to win the set 25-20 and the match.

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