March 22, 2013 at 8:31 PM HST - Updated July 27 at 2:50 AM
LOS ANGELES (HawaiiAthletics) – The No. 5 University of Hawai'i women's sand volleyball squad played on the mainland for the first time this season, splitting a pair of matches against No. 4 USC and No. 9 Nebraska at Merle Norman Stadium Friday morning on the campus of USC.
The Rainbow Wahine fell to the host Trojans, 5-0, before bouncing back for a 3-2 win over the Cornhuskers. UH moved to 2-1 on the year.
The morning did not start well for UH as USC completed a sweep of the 'Bows. It was only the second time in 12 all-time dual matches that UH was blanked. The first occurrence was against national champion Pepperdine during a match in California last year. The tandems of Ali Longo-Karlee Riggs and Tai Manu-Olevao-Emily Mount did extend their matches to three sets, but were unable to pull through.
UH regrouped in its next match. In the first-ever meeting between UH and Nebraska on the sand, the Rainbow Wahine got the better of the Cornhuskers, who are making their debut in the sport this year. Like their season-opening win over Florida International last week, UH got all three of its points from the No. 4, 5 and 6 flights as the pairs of Longo-Riggs, Ashley Kastl- Manu-Olevao and Olivia Urban-Ku`ulei Zalopany, each claimed straight-set victories.
Next up for the Rainbow Wahine is a trip to Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Ariz., this weekend. UH will face Grand Canyon and Loyola Marymount in a pair of dual matches on Saturday, March 23, before the three teams face off in a tournament format on Sunday, March 24.