Robinson’s 25 kills aren’t enough as Utah Volleyball falls in Arizona State ‘ Utah

TEMPE, Ariz. — Utah Volleyball Madelyn Robinson posted a match-high 25 kills Wednesday afternoon, but it wasn’t enough to edge Tempe with a win as the Utes lost in four sets to Arizona State (24-26, 18-25, 25-22, 17- 25). at the Desert Financial Arena. The match marked Robinson’s sixth match with 20 or more kills that season.

Also on Wednesday Vanessa Ramirez released 17 digs to reach 1,012 career digs and became the 13th player in program history to join the 1000 career dig club. Ramirez’s 17 digs were a match-high and her 26th match with double-digit digs this season.

The Sun Devils pulled away in the first set after a 5-1 run, leaving the Utes 12-6. Utah responded by scoring eight of the next 10 points to level the opening set 14-14. From that point on, Utah was a point or two behind but managed to tie the set every time Arizona State withdrew.

Consecutive kills of Madelyn Robinson Tie 23-23 while a Sun Devil attacking error would give the Utes set point. After a time-out, Arizona State recorded back-to-back kills to earn a set point of their own before a Ute attacking error gave ASU the 26-24 win. Robinson recorded six kills in the process KJ Burgess added four kills as Utah achieved a combined hit percentage of .303. ASU adjusted the offensive effort with a .318 clip in the opening set.

There was little separation early in the second set as both teams limited big jumps in points. The Sun Devils batted first after a 5-1 run that set Utah back 20-15 late in the frame. The Utes were only able to cut the lead to four points before Arizona State closed the set with a 3-0 run to win 25-18 and take a 2-0 lead in the match. The Sun Devils continued the hot hitting at a .387 clip while the Utes hit just .176 in the second set.

Utah gained momentum early in the third set, moving 8-4 on a 6-0 run. ASU later drew within two points, but Utah held off the home team and increased the lead back to four points (14-10) after a kill from Burgess. Utah later led 20-16 and allowed a 3-0 run from Arizona State to reduce the lead to just a point, but back-to-back kills from Robinson forced the Sun Devils to call a 22-19 timeout. The teams went point by point, with Utah eventually claiming the 25-22 win. Robinson got eight kills in the set to lead the offense, as she had been all match.

Utah fell behind early in the fourth set and used a 4-1 run to level the score at 9-9 and limit the damage. Arizona State’s offense, coupled with strong blocking efforts, managed to gain an 18-12 lead over Utah. Allie Olsen earned a much-needed sideout, but another 4-1 run by the Sun Devils extended the lead to 22-14 and would eventually take the frame 25-17 to end the game.

Along with Robinson’s 25 kills, Utah amassed nine kills on .429 hit by Burgess and seven kills on .538 hit by Olsen. Kamry Bailey and Megan Yett Each released 12 digs to join Ramirez in double figures EmilySmith handed out 26 assists and Grace Hammond added 21 assists.

Utah wraps up the 2022 regular season with a game in Colorado this Friday, November 25 at 3:00 p.m. MT. The Utes and Buffaloes will play at the CU Events Center and will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.