San Jose-The Spartans needed five sets Saturday night, but the team defeated Louisiana Tech, 23-25, 25-21, 25-19, 21-25, 15-12 in Spartan Gym.
In a true team victory, four Spartans recorded double-figure kills, led by Taylor Japhet and Kylie Miraldi who each 16. Krista Miller had a season-best 12 kills, while Alex Akana added 11. Miraldi hit a team-best .520 with her 16 kills on 25 swings and just three hitting errors.
On the blocking front, Akana led the team with five blocks, one solo and four assists. Japhet had four block assists, while Miller and Miraldi each added two block assists.
Caitlin Andrade recorded her sixth consecutive double-double with 54 assists and 15 digs and added five kills and four service aces. Kristal Tsukano added six kills, 15 digs and four assists, while Thao Pham led the team with 20 digs and had two aces.
Others contributing included Courtney Zellmer with five digs and two kills. Katie Turner had seven digs and an ace, while Asia Casino recorded four digs and two aces.
After dropping the first set to the Lady Techsters, the Spartans jumped out to an early 10-3 lead and never looked back in the second set, winning 25-21 on a Louisiana Tech hitting error. The Lady Techsters did cut the lead to one point twice at 21-20 and 22-21, but the Spartans scored the final three points in the win.
The third set featured five ties and three lead changes. San Jose State took the lead for good at 9-8 on a Miller kill and led by as many as six before winning 25-19.
In the fourth set, Louisiana Tech jumped out to a 10-5 lead, but the Spartans fought back to tie the score at 17-17 and had a lead at 18-17 before the Lady Techsters scored three consecutive points to take the lead and win the set 25-21 to force a fifth set.
Entering this match, the Spartans were 0-2 in five-set matches included a tough five-set loss Tuesday evening to Sacramento State. The two teams battled early in the fifth set before San Jose State took advantage of Lady Techster hitting errors to take a 6-3 lead and never look back. Andrade gave the Spartans its first victory of the season with her fourth service ace of the match for a 15-12 win.
"This is a huge win for us and takes that monkey off of our back," said San Jose State head coach Oscar Crespo. "The ladies stayed focused on what we needed to do tonight and fought hard for it. We had to minimize our errors which we were not doing early in the mach.
"I am really happy for them. This win couldn't come fast enough. Winning helps any team get better, and they believe we can win. I do want to say that Louisiana Tech is a much improved team, and it was a battle tonight with them."
The Spartans now have a chance to make it two wins in a row as these same two teams will play in Ruston this Thursday evening beginning at 7 p.m. CDT/5 p.m. PDT. Live stats will be available with a link provided on the Spartan web site. A video feed is also available on the Louisiana Tech web site at www.latechsports.com.
San Jose State def. Louisiana Tech - 23-25, 25-21, 25-19, 21-25, 15-12.
Kills - Louisiana Tech - Kara Jones 15, KC Clayton 15.
San Jose State - Taylor Japhet 16, Kylie Miraldi 16, Krista Miller 12, Alex Akana 11.
Records - San Jose State 1-16, 1-5; Louisiana Tech 12-11, 2-5.
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