Tempe, Ariz.-Taylor Japhet led the Spartan volleyball team with 12 kills Friday afternoon as San Jose State opened the 2011 season at the ASU/Sheraton Classic. In a hard-fought match, the Spartans lost in four sets, 25-22, 25-20, 22-25, 25-22, to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
"We played well tonight, but our 18 service errors did not help us," said Spartan head coach Oscar Crespo. "This was a good outing for our first match of the season."
Japhet recorded her 12 kills on 40 attempts and had seven hitting errors. She added five digs and three block assists in the match.
"Taylor played steady tonight for us," said Crespo. "She was poised on the court and attacked well during the match. She is playing with more confidence every day."
Krista Miller and Kylie Miraldi led the team in blocks with five block assists each. Miller hit a team-best .364 in the match with nine kills on 22 attempts and just one hitting error. She also recorded her first career double-digit dig match to lead the Spartans with 14 digs. Miraldi added eight kills and three digs.
"Krista started the match strong with a couple of blocks for us and was very steady offensively," said Crespo. "She was able to take advantage of the block at the net and passed tremendously well."
Freshman Savanah Leaf made her Spartan debut Friday afternoon. She recorded eight kills, 10 digs and a block assist.
Setter Caitlin Andrade recorded 43 assists in the match. She also had seven digs, four kills and a block assist.
Others contributing to the Spartans on Friday included Alex Akana with eight kills and three blocks. Libero Katie Turner had 12 digs, three assists and a kill, while Hanah Blume added three digs.
San Jose State had leads in every set Friday afternoon. In the third set, Caitlin Andrade served seven consecutive points as the Spartans jumped out to a 14-9 lead. The team would not relinquish the lead and won the set 25-20.
The Spartans continue action on Saturday with two matches. The team faces Denver Saturday morning at 10 a.m., and host Arizona State Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. Live stats are available for both matches, and links are on the Spartan web site under "Live Stats."
Milwaukee def. San Jose State - 25-22, 25-20, 20-25, 25-22.
Kills - SJSU - Taylor Japhet 12.
UWM - Kerri Schuh 17, Elizabeth Egerer 11.
Records - Milwaukee 1-0; San Jose State 0-1.
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