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Volleyball: ‘Dogs fall to the bottom

The Fresno State volleyball team was defeated 3-1 by the San Jose State Spartans on Thursday. It was the Spartans’ first conference win of the season.

San Jose State entered Thursday’s contest at the bottom of the Mountain West standings, having lost all 10 of their conference games in a row. The Bulldogs weren’t much better at 1-9, but they had completed a sweep against the Spartans earlier this month.

The Bulldogs weren’t able to snag their second win against the Spartans on Thursday, however. SJSU set the tone early with an 8-1 scoring run to take a 10-4 advantage to open the first set. Fresno State fought back to tie the game at 17 each, but San Jose State broke the tie with four straight points, three on kills from freshman middle blocker Nandyala Gama. SJSU junior outside hitter Tyranna Roy closed out the 25-19 set win with three consecutive kills.

Fresno State used a big run of its own to answer in the second set. Freshman middle blocker Lauren Torres helped break a 9-9 tie with two kills as part of seven unanswered points for the Bulldogs. With a 16-9 lead, five different Bulldogs earned kills to close out the 25-17 set win.

Six straight points for Fresno State in the third set gave it a 9-6 lead, but the Bulldogs couldn’t keep their momentum going. San Jose State outscored Fresno State 9-1 in the next 10 points, including three aces. The Bulldogs closed the gap to 20-19, but another late push by Roy and the Spartans gave them a 25-20 set win.

The Bulldogs’ 1-0 start to the third set would be their only lead. Roy led the Spartans on a 6-0 run with three kills of her own. Fresno State closed the lead to one at 16-15, but Roy again sparked the Spartan team with three straight kills as SJSU ran away with a 25-19 set win to take the match.

Roy wasn’t the only one giving Fresno State problems. Roy’s 18 kills were accompanied by 19 from Gama. The Bulldogs were led by 11 kills and 11 digs from Jaimee-Lee Morrow, 11 kills by Carly Scarbrough and 10 kills and 16 digs by junior outside hitter Zana Bowens. Fresno State finished with a .237-.235 advantage in hitting.

After a 0-10 start to conference play, San Jose State has company in the Mountain West cellar. The Bulldogs and Spartans are now tied for 10th in the conference standings at 1-10.

The loss marks the seventh straight for the Bulldogs and drops the team to 6-19 on the season. The ‘Dogs next play at Nevada (6-14, 3-7) on Saturday at 1 p.m. The Wolf Pack defeated the Spartans 3-0 on Tuesday. After Saturday’s matchup, the Bulldogs will play four straight at home.