Pacific women's volleyball: Tigers Put Together A Dominating Effort To Sweep Away Siena
Spurred on by an all-around effort, the Pacific women's volleyball team put together a dominating performance to sweep Siena in three games at the Texas A&M Invitational on Saturday, August 28. The win for the Tigers improved their record to 2-1 on the year and at the tournament while the Saints fell to 0-3.
Game scores for the match were: 25-12, 25-16, 25-15.
With their first win of the season under their belts from a night ago, the Tigers did not let down in their tournament finale against Siena, knocking the Saints down early and never letting them up en route to the comfortable victory. Form the outset, Pacific had too much offense for the Saints to handle as the Tigers found open lanes and open floor against Siena.
To open the match, Pacific flew out to a 12-4 lead against the Saints before Siena could catch its breath. In the heart of the run, the Tigers middle blockers made good use of their size and speed advantage over the Saints to put points on the board for Pacific. Sophomore Gabby Cowden (Danville, Calif.) knocked down her first kill of the weekend just five points into the match sparking a perfect morning in which she tallied six kills on six attempts. Her counterpart, freshman Jennifer Sanders (Katy, Texas) put together a stretch in which she scored three straight Tiger points with kills in the center of the court helping to pull attention away from Pacific's outside hitters.
Up big early, Pacific put away the Saints with relative ease as they never allowed Siena to score more than two points consecutively throughout the entire opener. With the first game in the back pocket, the Tigers needed a little extra time to break open the second contest as the Saints stayed with Pacific early. The two teams remained close at 10-7 before an 8-3 run by the Tigers broke open the game. Senior Svenja Engelhardt (Sinheim, Germany) pushed Pacific's run by scoring four of the points during the stretch as she tagged three kills in the span while combining with Cowden on a block for the fourth point. For the set, Engelhardt tallied six of the Tigers 17 kills with all six players on the court scoring for Pacific during the game.
Game three proved to be all about the freshmen for the Tigers with Megan Birch (Monroe, Wash.) leading the way offensively on her way to her first collegiate double-digit kill performance. During the game, Birch tallied a team-high five kills on six swings, committing just one error in the process. Additionally, Sanders in the middle provided four kills to finish the match with nine in the contest. With the offense taken care of at the net, freshman Taeler Davis (Phelan, Calif.) made her first appearance on the court for the Tigers, entering the game as a serving specialist in place of Birch late. Behind the line, Davis gave the Tigers instant offense with three straight service aces that pushed a six point lead into an insurmountable nine point lead late in the match. In addition to her aces, Davis also recorded her first collegiate digs in the game.
Overall, the Tigers put together a complete performance on both sides of the net as they hit .404 as a team with 51 kills and 11 errors in 99 attacks. Engelhardt posted a match-high 14 kills while also picking up her first two aces of the season. Birch ended the match with a career-high 12 kills as she took 17 swings and committed just three errors to finish with a .529 hitting percentage. Sophomore setter Hannah Clancy (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) finished just short of her second double-double of the year as she tallied 42 assists and seven digs to go along with two kills. As a team the Tigers posted 44 digs with sophomore Rebekah Torres (Wahiawa, Hawaii) tallying a match-high 15.
For the Siants, Taylor Akana was the only hitter to make a real impact on the contest for Siena as she finished with 12 of the Saints' 25 kills. In total, the Saints hit just .174 for the match posting 25 kills and 10 errors on 86 attacks.
The Tigers will be back in action on Friday, September 3 when they play host to Idaho in their first game of the 32nd Annual Community Bankers Classic at the Alex G. Spanos Center. The three team tournament kicks off on Thursday, August 2 with Idaho taking on Santa Clara. All three matches will begin at 7:00 pm.