PALO ALTO, Calif. — No. 2 San Diego volleyball on Saturday pulled out the box the program’s biggest win after stunning No. 1 seed Stanford with a thrilling 3-2 win in the NCAA Tournament’s Elite Eight. The win for the Toreros left the home fans inside the Maples Pavilion shocked as the nation’s No. 3 ranked team advanced to its first-ever Final Four with the win in Stanford Regional Final on Saturday (10).
San Diego (31-1, 18-0 WCC) fell in the first set 25-19, but rallied for a 25-22 win in the second, before dropping the third 25-19 again. The team, however, erupted for 25-23 and 15-9 wins in the fourth and the deciding fifth sets to secure a five-set comeback win in Palo Alto. Read More: No. 2 Pittsburgh shocks No.1 Wisconsin with victory in Madison Regional final
San Diego Volleyball Team Makes School History with Final Four Appearance
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Redshirt senior Katie Lukes (.185) led USD with 20 kills, followed by both senior opposite/setter Grace Frohling (.308) and graduate outside hitter Breana Edwards (.293) with 18 apiece as their team out-hit Stanford .283 to .253.
Edwards and junior middle blocker Leyla Blackwell paced the San Diego defense with seven total blocks each.
San Diego Defies Odds, Earns Spot in NCAA Volleyball Final Four – Snaps Stanford Win Streak
Saturday’s defeat sees Stanford’s 21-match win streak and 2022 season end in the 2022 NCAA Stanford Regional Final at Maples Pavilion. The Cardinal finishes its 2022 season with a 27-5 overall record.
Kendall Kipp paced the Stanford (27-5,19-1 Pac-12) team with a career-best matching 24 kills, along with five digs and six blocks. Freshman Elia Rubin posted her second consecutive double-double performance, totaling 13 kills and 10 digs, while Caitie Baird had 10 kills, seven digs, and three blocks. Baird’s sixth kill of the night was the 1000th of her career.
Defensively, Elena Oglivie paced the host with 21 digs, to go with two service aces, and Sami Francis led the team with nine blocks in just her second appearance for the Cardinal since Oct. 23.
Saturday night’s win marked San Diego’s program-record 28th in a row. The Toreros joined No. 1 seeds Texas and Louisville, and No. 2 seed Pittsburgh in the NCAA National Tournament Semifinal. The Final Four in Omaha, Nebraska starts on Thursday, December 15.