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Hawaii upsets No. 1 USC in sand volleyball, advances to semifinal

The SandBows edge Women of Troy 3-2

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 7:04 a.m. HST, May 4, 2014

Fourth-seeded Hawaii avenged its loss to top-ranked USC from earlier this season by defeating the Women of Troy 3-2 in Friday's second round of the AVCA Collegiate Sand Volleyball Championships at Gulf Shores, Ala.

The Rainbow Wahine (20-3) advanced earlier Friday with a 4-1 win over No. 5 Florida International. USC (22-2), which edged Hawaii 3-2 in March at Queen's Beach, had an opening-round bye and was riding a 21-match winning streak.

The SandBows, making their first appearance in the team portion of this event, advance to Saturday's semifinal. Hawaii will meet No. 3 Florida State, which eliminated Florida International Friday. at 6 a.m. Hawaii time. 

On the other side of the bracket, No. 2 Pepperdine advanced to Saturday's semifinal and will face USC. The Women of Troy eliminated Stetson Friday.  

Hawaii clinched the match against USC with a win at No. 3 with Ginger Long and Ali Long defeating Sam Hirschmann and Natasa Siljkovic, 21-19, 22-20. The final match was at No. 2 where Katie Spieler and Nikki Taylor fell to Kelly Claes and Alexa Strange, 15-21, 21-18, 15-12.

Hawaii's only loss in the opener against FIU came at No. 4 when Martyna Gluchowicz and Kristine Monforte of the Panthers (14-3) swept London Chow and Olivia Urban 21-10, 21-17.  

The Rainbow Wahine have now won five straight matches and 16 of their last 17. UH's last loss was 5-0 to No. 2 Pepperdine on April 12.

In other matches vs. FIU:

1. Brittany Tiegs-Karissa Cook (UH) def.  Jessica Gehrke/Marina Boulanger (FIU) 21-9, 21-16

2. Katie Spieler-Nikki Taylor (UH) def. Aren Cup/Tina Toghiyana (FIU) 21-18, 21-13

3. Ali Longo-Ginger Long (UH) def. Jessica Mendoza/ Ksenia Sukhareva (FIU) 21-19, 21-18

5. Karlee Riggs-Mikayla Tucker (UH) def. Camila Rosado/Maja Rosko (FIU) 21-18, 21-17

In other matches vs. USC

1. Tiegs-Cook def. Burnham-Hughes 2-0 (23-21, 22-20)

4: Chow-Urban def. Ettinger-Russ 2-0 (21-19, 21-19)

5: Martin-Wheeler def. Riggs-Tucker 2-0 (21-9, 21-19)

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