Pacific men's volleyball: Middle Blockers Lead Pacific Past Hope International, 3-1
Led by juniors Sean Daley and Chaz Hindsley in the middle the Pacific men's volleyball team picked up their second win of the weekend over Hope International winning 3-1 at the Alex G. Spanos Center on Friday, January 7. The win moved the Tigers to 2-0 overall while the Royals fell to 2-2.
Set scores for the match were: 25-20, 25-23, 21-25, 25-16.
Picking up where they left off from the night before the Tigers opened the match against the Royals by trading early points before opening up a lead midway through the set that would hold for the victory. Building throughout the opening set, the Tigers, led by sophomore Patrick Tunnell, spread the ball around throughout their offense, using all six attackers while hitting an impressive .458 as a team. Signs of what was in store showed in the first frame as Daley and Hindsley needed just six attacks to post five combined kills.
Looking for more, Pacific found itself in a battle in game two as the Royals adjusted their defense at the net to frustrate the Tiger attack and force Pacific into seven errors in the set. Despite being forced to adjust, the Tigers were able to adapt as they took a 20-20, race to five set, and turned it into their fifth straight set victory over Hope International with a steady dose of balanced offense. Of the five points needed the Tigers got kills from five different hitters. Sophomore Taylor Hughes led the way in the set with six kills Daley and sophomore Matthew Houlihan each added four.
With their second sweep of the week at hand, the Tigers saw their perfect start to the weekend dashed by the perseverance of the Royals as Hope International refused to let the Tigers take game three. Just as with set two, the contest came down to a first to five scenario as the two teams battled to a 20-20 draw. Behind the serving of Kaimi Guerreiro the Royals changed their fortunes from set two as they used a 5-1 run to close out the set on the Tigers. Doing his part, Daley posted five kills in five swings in the set, but his perfect frame was out done by Mana Guerreiro who tallied six kills, including two in the final six points.
After dropping their first set of the young season, the Tigers responded with their biggest win of the week, cruising to a 25-16 victory in the fourth and final set to take the match. Tied at 10-10, Pacific used a 15-6 run to close out the Royals as the Tigers used their defense to stymie any ideas of a comeback. In the set, Pacific posted 5.5 blocks, led by Houlihan's three of his match-high five blocks, while holding the Royals to -.081 hitting.
Nearly perfect on the night, Daley saw his bid for an errorless evening end in set four on a block by the Royals. However, Daley would finish the contest with a match-high 15 kills on 21 swings while hitting .667. Alongside, Hindsley quietly put together an impressive performance as he tallied 12 kills on 16 swings to hit .750. As a team the Tigers hit .306 with Tunnell setting up his attackers with 48 assists. Hughes finished with 11 kills while freshman libero Javier Caceres posted 22 digs defensively.
The Royals had three attackers reach double-figures as both Guerreiro's and Andrew Speth each posted 12 kills in the match. As a team the Royals hit .136 while Pacific posted 13.5 blocks.
The Tigers are back in action on the road on in Ft. Wayne, Indiana when they travel to take on Indiana Purdue Ft Wayne on Thursday, January 13. The match is scheduled for 7:00 pm ET.