No. 1 Southern California rallied from a 2-1 deficit to defeat No. 3 Hawaii in five sets on Friday night to advance to an NCAA volleyball regional final against Pepperdine.
A sold-out Stan Sheriff Center crowd of 9,692 saw Hawaii’s 26-match winning streak — and season — come to a painful end, 19-25, 29-27, 19-25, 25-23, 15-12.
Alex Jupiter led USC with 33 kills and 26 digs.
Jane Croson had 25 kills and Kanani Danielson had 21 to lead UH. They tied for a team-high 23 digs each.
Hawaii had eliminated the Trojans in postseason play in three of the last five years.
Brittany Hewitt had two solos and nine block assists as Hawaii held a 15-14 edge in total blocks for the match.
Katie Fuller was the only other Trojan in double figures with 12 kills. USC hit .211 in the match while the Rainbow Wahine finished at .220.
UH setter Mita Uiato finished with 65 assists and 11 digs and libero Emily Maeda chipped in 17 digs.
USC (29-4) entered the match ranked No. 1 in the latest AVCA Coaches Top 25 poll and is the tournament’s No. 1 overall seed. Hawaii was ranked third but seeded 10th.
Pepperdine defeated Kansas State 25-18, 25-12, 25-23 in the evening’s first match. The Waves (25-6) and Trojans will play on Saturday night at 7.