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Utah Volleyball Blacks Out No. 19 USC

Utes snap five-match losing streak, sweeping the Trojans on Blackout night in front of 1,493 fans.

The Utah volleyball team swept the No. 19 USC Trojans on Blackout night.
The Utah volleyball team swept the No. 19 USC Trojans on Blackout night.
University of Utah Athletics

Utah Volleyball did the unthinkable Friday night at the Huntsman Center. Not only did the Utes beat No. 19 USC for only the second time in history, but they swept the Trojans in three sets. The Utes took control of the match from the first serve, and held off the Trojans for the victory. Utah controlled all facets of the game, dominated the middle of the court, and left the No. 19 Trojans stunned, as the Utes celebrated the sweep in their blackout uniforms.

Playing in front of 1,493 fans – the fourth largest crowd to witness a volleyball game inside the Huntsman Center – the Utes (13-11, 3-10) also snapped a five-match losing streak on the season.

The first set was a back and forth affair, with both teams having significant runs. The Utes went on a 3-0 run to capture the lead at 9-6. Then the Trojans went on a run of their own taking the lead at 10-9. Utah went on a couple more runs, and found themselves on top 20-13, but USC wouldn't go down easy, fighting back with a 4-1 run run to cut the Utah lead to 21-14. However the Utes closed out with the final four points of the set, and ended it with a block by Senior Shelby Dalton, and freshman Carley Trueman.

Utah started the second set 8-3 and took command, pushed their lead to 20-14 looking to close out the second set. USC went on a 5-2 run but Utah managed to hold off the Trojans to take the second set 25-22.

The Trojans came out the third set looking like the #19 ranked team. The Utes would have none of it as they matched every USC kill, with a kill of their own. The teams traded points back and forth, before USC went on a 4-1 run to take over the match determined to come back and take the third set from the Utes. Utah then made a 7-2 run to bring the Huntsman Center crowd to their feet, as they tied up the set at 21-21. Utah would come close at match point at 24-23, when USC once again tied up the set. The Utes finished off the final two points, as senior Kalee Kirby sent her game winning kill off the hands of a Trojan player, and up into the crowd.

The Utes finished with an amazing 52 kills, with 12 of those from senior Chelsey Schofield-Olsen, and 8 each for freshman Adora Anae, Shelby Dalton, and freshman Eliza Katoa. The 52 kills were 14 more than the 38 from the Trojans. The Utes also had 52 digs to the 37 from the Trojans.

The Utes will hope to ride the momentum into Sunday's match vs UCLA, and the Bruins did at Colorado, what the Utah did to USC, sweeping the Buffaloes in three sets.