Nov. 10, 2012
RENO, Nev. - With a 3-1 victory over Nevada on Saturday, Nov. 10, the Air Force volleyball team picked up its first Mountain West road win since 2003. After dropping the first set 25-22, the Falcons rallied for consecutive 25-21, 32-30, 25-18 victories to complete the season sweep of the Wolfpack.
Four Falcons collected double-digit kill totals, as the team recorded a .301 hitting percentage. Freshman Felicia Clement paced the Falcons with 15 kills, while junior Cami Richan added 14. Freshmen Maggie Sherrill and Raquel Rosas rounded out the double-figure scorers with respective totals of 11 and 10. Connecting on 10 of 13 attempts, while committing no errors, Rosas collected a team-high .769 average. Sophomore Hillary Keltner recorded 45 assists, while senior Maiya Perich collected 18 digs.
Clement and sophomore Ayesha Hein each tallied four blocks to lead the team, with one of Hein's stops coming as a solo block. Hein was also one of four Falcons to record a service ace, joining Perich and freshmen Rachael Bradley Powers and Rebecca Bates.
Nevada earned the first point of the match, but freshman Taylor Parker evened things up on the ensuing point. Clement added a kill, but the Wolfpack doubled up the Falcons at the 8-4 mark. Kills by Hein and Parker helped Air Force pull within one (8-7). Sherrill put down a kill to keep the Falcons within one (9-8), but Nevada jumped out to a five-point lead (17-12), despite three kills from Clement. Three straight attacking errors by the Wolfpack brought the score within two, while a kill from Richan kept Nevada's advantage at two (19-17). Clement added another kill, but the Wolfpack reached set-point at the 24-19 mark. Air Force scored the next three points behind a kill and solo block from Richan, before Nevada tallied the final point for the 25-22 win.
Following a 2-0 start to the second set by the Wolfpack, Keltner and Hein helped the Falcons tie the set at two. Air Force earned its first lead of the match (4-3) off of an attacking error by the home team and extended its advantage to 7-4 behind kills from Hein and Sherrill. The pair teamed up for a block at the 8-5 mark, while kills from Sherrill and Rosas kept the Falcons with a three-point advantage (10-7). Nevada evened the set at 11. Rosas tallied another score to return the lead to the Falcons on the ensuing point, while Hein and Clement pushed Air Force's lead to two (14-12). Clement added another score, but Nevada tied the set at 15. Richan put down back-to-back kills to put the Falcons up 17-15, while Sherrill and Rosas increased the score to 19-16. Two UNR errors put the Falcons over the 20-point mark, while Clement (two) and Sherrill secured the 25-21 Air Force victory.
Clement scored the first point of the third set and added another that tied the set at two. Nevada errors evened the set at the three- and four-point marks, while a score by Richan tied things at five. Bradley Powers gave the Falcons the lead (6-50) with a service ace, while kills from Keltner and Rosas put the Falcons ahead by two (8-6). With the Falcons leading 10-8, Richan scored the next four points for Air Force to put the score at 14-11. Nevada evened the score at 17, before Hein helped the Falcons retake an advantage at the 20-17 mark. Air Force reached set-point (23-20), but the Wolfpack scored four unanswered points to claim their own set-point at 24-23. The two squads traded the lead, as kills from Rosas evened the set at 24- and 26-all. Hein scored the next point to put the Falcons up 27-26, but UNR tied the score. Air Force took set-point at 28-27 (Keltner), 29-28 (block by Hein/Clement) and 30-29 (Sherrill), but Nevada matched scores on each of the ensuing points. Sherrill put down the next two kills on back-to-back plays to give the Falcons the 32-30 victory.
The 32-point output is the program's second-highest single-match total since 25-point scoring went into effect for the 2008 season, trailing only the 35 that the Falcons put up earlier this year against Colorado.
Air Force scored the first three points of the fourth set off of a service ace (Bates), kill (Rosas) and block (Rosas/Clement). Rosas and Richan added kills as the Falcons went ahead 7-2 and forced the Wolfpack into calling a timeout. Coming out of the break, Nevada scored six of the next nine points to cut the Falcons' lead to three (11-8). Sherrill put down a kill that halted Nevada's run and sparked a 7-1 stretch of play by Air Force. During that run Clement teamed up with Rosas and Hein for blocks and joined Rosas and Keltner for a combined three kills. Perich also earned her service ace during the run that saw Air Force double up Nevada 18-9. The Wolfpack scored eight of the next 10 points to cut their deficit to three (20-17), with Clement producing both Air Force points. Sherrill and Richan tallied kills to help bring the score to match-point, before a kill strike by Sherrill finalized the set with a 25-18 Air Force victory.
The win marked the first time since Nov. 15, 2003, when the Falcons defeated Wyoming in straight sets, that Air Force has claimed a Mountain West victory away from the Academy.
Air Force concludes its home schedule next week against Colorado State and Wyoming. The Falcons will host the Rams at 6 p.m., on Thursday, Nov. 15, before closing out East Gym against the Cowgirls on Saturday, Nov. 17, at 7 p.m. Air Force will honor its lone senior Maiya Perich prior to Thursday's match during the program's Senior Night Celebration.