USC suffers a tough loss to Pepperdine on the road

The Women of Troy fell to Pepperdine in a 1-4 loss Saturday. The Waves improved to a 6-0 record, while USC dropped to 5-2.

In the morning’s team competition, the pairs team of junior Katie Fuller and sophomore Natalie Hagglund was the only team to win, with scores of 25-23 and 24-22 in the No. 3 spot.

Playing in the No. 1 spot, Pepperdine’s Caitlin Racich and Summer Ross defeated USC’s sophomore Sara Shaw and graduate student Geena Urango 21-16 and 21-18.

“The most important thing to keep in mind when building a new athletic program is to slowly build a very strong foundation,” USC coach Anna Collier said. “Starting with this strong foundation will help build a better and more successful sand volleyball team in the future.”

During the afternoon competition, Shaw and Urango advanced to the semifinals by defeating Pepperdine’s Kellie Woolever and Victoria Adelhelm in the quarterfinals 21-18, 17-21 and 15-12.

Meanwhile, Fuller and Hagglund beat Pepperdine’s Lilla Frederick and Kim Hill in the quarterfinals 15-21, 21-14 and 15-10. Fuller and Hagglund then went on to defeat USC’s Shaw and Urango in the semifinals with scores of 21-17 and 21-19.

“I am very pleased we are doing well coming into a new sport,” Collier said. “I was not sure what to expect but I knew when watching the girls on the indoor team make it to the Final Four that I would have some great athletes to work with this spring.”

USC will participate next in the U.S.A.V Beach Collegiate Challenge April 14-15 in Hermosa Beach. The Women of Troy will play against Pepperdine, Hawai’i, Long Beach State and Loyola Marymount.

“These girls are winners. They had a winning season indoors and have brought that same mindset to the sand game,” Collier said. “They came into the season wanting to train hard and win, and thus far have been successful.”

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