Pacific Women's Volleyball: Second Sweep Of UC Irvine Nets Pacific 2-0 Weekend
Continuing their dominance over UC Irvine, the Pacific women's volleyball team picked up its second three-game sweep of the Anteaters on the season with a 3-0 win on Saturday, October 30. The victory netted Pacific its 15th victory of the season as the Tigers moved to 15-8 on the year and 7-4 in the Big West while the Anteaters fell to 5-19 overall and just 1-10 in the conference.
Game scores for the match were: 25-20, 25-22, 25-16.
A slow start to their night would not stand in the way of the Tigers taking home their fifth straight overall victory and fourth straight conference win. In a game that saw 14 tie scores and five lead changes, the Tigers turned the back-and-forth game around late in the frame by rolling out a 6-1 run to end the contest including winning the final four points of the opening frame. During the game senior Svenja Engelhardt continued her push to the top of Pacific's all-time serving list by picking up a pair of aces that put her career total at 171. Trailing Jan Saunders (1981-84) by one coming into the match, Engelhardt picked up her tying ace midway through the match to give the Tigers their second lead of the game and the ace that moved her alone into second place overall to give the Tigers game point.
Up comfortably in the second game with a 22-16 lead late, the Tigers saw the Anteaters make a run at getting back into the contest with a defensive stand that would bring UC Irvine to within two points of Pacific. Defensively the Anteaters posted three consecutive blocks against the Tiger attack to ignite the run, however, the rally was quelled when Engelhardt and junior Samantha Misa buried perfect sets from sophomore Hannah Clancy to close out the game, 25-22. After being held without a kill in the first game, Misa responded with a five kill performance in the second game including picking up the final kill of the frame.
Not wanting to make the mistake of letting the Anteaters get back into the game in game two and learning from their lapse a night prior, the Tigers buried UC Irvine early in game three and never looked back en route to their three-game sweep. A 5-0 run early in the game got the Tiger on the right foot as sophomore Gabby Cowden started the run with Clancy served the Anteaters into bad offensive swings resulting in four straight attack errors. Pacific would push its lead to as mush as 11 in the game before putting UC Irvine away with kills from Misa and Engelhardt. Helping the Tigers' cause throughout the third and final game was Clancy in the middle who posted three kills in three attempts while also tallying a near double-double in the game with 10 assists and eight digs.
Overall, Clancy finished the night with her team-leading 10th double-double as she tallied 31 assists and 19 digs, one off of her career high of 20 digs. In addition, the sophomore posted five kills in five attempts. Attacking wise, Engelhardt led all hitters with 14 kills, but hit just .133 as she committed eight errors on 45 swings. Despite the sub-par hitting performance, Engelhardt added seven digs and a block to go along with her two service aces. Misa finished the night with seven kills but also added 14 digs to give her 30 digs over the weekend for the Tigers. Cowden completed her night with eight kills and one ace while defensively posting two digs and three blocks including two solo efforts.
The Anteaters completed their night hitting .070 as they posted 33 kills and 24 errors on 128 attacks. Kari Pestolesi was the lone UC Irvine attacker to finish with double-digit kills as she posted 10 in 28 attempts to go along with 16 digs. In addition the senior outside hitter added an ace and two blocks to lead the way for UC Irvine on the night.
The Tigers head back home to take on Sacramento State on Tuesday, November 2 when the Hornets come to the Alex G. Spanos Center for non-conference action. The match is scheduled for 7:00 pm.