San Jose, Calif.-Four Spartans recorded double-digit kills to lead San Jose State to a five-set victory over Texas Tech, 26-24, 15-25, 25-21, 27-29, 15-12, in the team's final non-conference match at Spartan Gym Tuesday night.
Alex Akana hit a team-best .500 for the night as she led the Spartans with a career-high 17 kills on 28 attempts and just three errors. She also led the team with five block assists.
"Alex really played great and was unstoppable for us tonight," said Spartan head coach Oscar Crespo. "She was able to adjust her hitting to the block in front of her, and Caitlin (Andrade) was able to adjust the sets to help Alex get her kills. It is nice when middles lead the team with kills."
Two Spartans recorded double-doubles in the match. Caitlin Andrade had her eighth double-double of the year with 56 assists and 10 digs. Samantha O'Connell recorded her first career double-double with 14 kills and 15 digs.
Two other Spartans recorded double-digit kills. Hanah Blume and Kylie Miraldi each recorded 10 kills. Blume added nine digs and four block assists, while Miraldi hit .250 with three blocks.
Others contributing to the win included Sarah Greist and Mary Alice O'Reilly who both came off the bench and each had four kills. Kiely Pieper added eight digs and two aces. Asia Casino had six digs, while Katie Turner recorded two digs.
"I am really proud and pleased with this team," said Crespo. "Tonight, we could have given up after the second or fourth set, but we regrouped and stayed focused with what we needed to do. They did not get down on themselves in the fifth set and stayed steady tonight.
"Kylie played a good match all night, and Mary Alice O'Reilly came in and gave us a different look. Kylie, Mary Alice, Alex and Sarah really do a nice job for us and I have all the confidence in the world with them."
The Spartans started the match with a 26-24 win in the first set. After tying the set at 24-24, Blume and Miraldi got back-to-back kills to get the win.
After falling in the second set, 25-15, the two teams had five lead changes and eight tie scores before winning 25-21. Behind 17-20, Griest served six consecutive points to give San Jose State a 24-21 lead before a Miraldi kill gave the team the win.
The two teams battled in the fourth set with San Jose State having match point at 26-25 before Texas Tech recorded five of the last six kills to win 29-27.
Akana made sure her new career-high 17th kill was memorable as she recorded the final kill of the fifth set to give San Jose State the 15-12 win. The Spartans took the lead for good in the set on a Red Raider hitting error.
San Jose State now prepares for its first appearance at the Western Athletic Conference Tournament since 2008. The sixth-seeded Spartans will play the third-seed New Mexico State Monday night at 5 p.m., at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.
San Jose State def. Texas Tech - 26-24, 15-25, 25-21, 27-29, 15-12.
Kills - Texas Tech - Amanda Dowdy 19, Breeann David 11, Miara Cave 11.
San Jose State - Alex Akana 17, Samantha O'Connell 14, Hanah Blume 10, Kylie Miraldi 10.
Records - Texas Tech 15-14; San Jose State 12-16.
# # #