SEATTLE – Even with a season-low hitting percentage, No. 2 Stanford claimed its second consecutive five-set win, topping No. 5 Washington (10-25, 28-26, 10-25, 26-24, 15-7) Friday at Alaska Airlines Arena. The Cardinal won its 15th consecutive match and is 17-2 overall and 9-0 in the Pac-12. The Huskies, who lost their first match at home this season, fall to 16-2 and 7-2 in the conference.
Junior middle blocker Carly Wopat led the team with 15 kills and two blocks. Freshman middle blocker Inky Ajanaku added nine kills and four blocks, while rookies Jordan Burgess and Brittany Howard combined for 16 kills and 34 digs. Sophomore Morgan Boukather finished with seven kills.
Freshman setter Madi Bugg finished with 37 assists and six digs. The Cardinal hit a season-low .110 as a team, while the Huskies finished with a .194 attack percentage.
Washington captured the first set 25-10. Stanford struggled to find its offensive rhythm, totaling just five kills in the set and hitting at -.175. Ajanaku led Stanford with two kills, while Burgess and Gilbert combined for 15 of the team’s 25 digs in the opening set. The Huskies were led by sophomore Krista Vansant’s four kills and three blocks.
Stanford answered in the second set, edging Washington 28-26 to tie up the match at one set apiece. The Cardinal picked up offensively and defensively, hitting .227 and limited the Huskies to a .143 clip. Stanford jumped out to an early lead, but UW rallied back as there were 15 tie scores and four lead changes in the set. Wopat paced the Cardinal with six kills and sealed the set with a solo block. Boukather added three kills for Stanford, while Gilbert anchored the defense with 11 digs. Kaleigh Nelson led the Huskies with four kills.
The third set mirrored the first as Washington again topped Stanford 25-10. The Cardinal hit negative in the set (-.034) and tallied just six kills. In contrast, the Huskies hit .375 in the third with 11 kills on 24 attempts with just two errors. UW jumped out to a 12-2 lead and trailed by at least 10 points from there on out. Wopat tallied three kills to lead Stanford, while Vansant put down five kills for UW.
The Cardinal forced a fifth set by winning the fourth, 26-24. Stanford took command of the set 16-11, but a 5-0 run by UW tied it at 16. From there, it was back and forth on the scoreboard until the Cardinal finally came out on top. Stanford hit .231 in the set, which had 11 tie scores and four lead changes. Burgess, Howard and Wopat all registered four kills in the set for Stanford. Vansant led UW with nine kills and three digs.
Stanford sealed the win with a 15-7 victory in the fifth set. The Cardinal hit .400 (9-1-20) and limited the Huskies to a .091 clip in the set. Stanford pulled out a 5-1 lead and never looked back. Ajanaku led the team with three kills, while Boukather pitched in with two. Vansant finished with 24 kills and 14 digs for Washington.