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Non-revenue roundup: WSU volleyball rides win streak into conference play

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The Cougars have won 11 straight after dropping their season opener, and they will face rival UW next.

Courtesy of WSU Athletic Communications

The WSU volleyball team has been rolling all of September, and hopefully the Cougars will continue their strong play as their schedule toughens. This week marks the beginning of conference play as they take on Washington at home Thursday.

This past weekend, WSU swept through another tournament -- this time down in Lubbock, Texas. The Cougs took on Northwestern St, Texas Tech and Portland State in the Lone Star Showdown and they didn't drop a single set throughout the weekend of play.

This marks the third straight tournament that the Cougs have gone undefeated and their winning streak is up to 11 matches. Since dropping their season opening match against Radford 3-1, WSU has dropped one set. It's hard to imagine a better response to their rough start.

One of the stars of the Lone Star Showdown was freshman outside hitter McKenna Woodford, who was named the Pac-12 freshman of the week. Woodford recorded 17 kills in the win against Texas Tech while recording a .538 hitting percentage in the match. She is just the fifth freshman in WSU history to take home the honor.

While it is good to see the team roll through their non-conference schedule, the quality of competition is likely much different than what they will face the rest of the year. Texas Tech is the only power conference team they have faced, and the Red Raiders went 2-14 in Big 12 play last season. UW will be a different beast Thursday, as the Huskies come in undefeated and ranked 6th in the country.

The Cougs and Huskies play at 7 p.m. on Thursday in Bohler Gym, and the match will be broadcast on Pac-12 Network.

The WSU women's soccer team fell one game shy of a perfect non-conference season, losing 2-0 to Portland on Sunday. The loss was coming off a big 3-0 victory over Gonzaga at home Thursday. The Cougs outshot the Pilots 14-10 and had 7 corners to Portland's, 2 but WSU couldn't come away with a goal, or the win.

"I'm disappointed to lose the way we did today," WSU Head Coach Todd Shulenberger said. "We had chances early to take control of the game and didn't capitalize. After that we got outcompeted by Portland. Hats off to them. We'll bounce back and get ready for Pac-12 play."

The Cougs start conference play this week with a record of 7-1-0. They travel to Tempe on Thursday to take on Arizona State.

Donika Bashota of the WSU tennis team continued to shine as the Cougars played in the BYU Invitational over the weekend. Bashota, a sophomore, captured her second straight singles title and has won nine straight matches to start the year. Bashota also claimed the doubles title with partner Lize Leenknecht.

The men's cross country team registered an upset Saturday over UW at the Sundodger Invitational. The Huskies came in ranked 21st nationally but WSU took the team title. On the women's side, the Cougs finished second, with UW coming in on top.

In the golf world, both men's and women's teams wrapped up tournaments The women were at home, hosting the Cougar Cup at Palouse Ridge, which they won with a team score of 866 (-3) Monday. The men were across the mountains at the Husky invitational, finishing seventh.

The most impressive aspect of the men's team? The top three scorers were two freshmen, Aaron Whalen and AJ Armstrong (both of whom finished tied for 10th), and a sophomore, Derek Bayley, who finished in the top 25. They're young, and they're good.