One down, one to go

Biola wins second to last regular season game, putting them one step closer to a playoff appearance.

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One down, one to go

Caroline Sommers/ THE CHIMES

Caroline Sommers/ THE CHIMES

Caroline Sommers/ THE CHIMES

Caroline Sommers/ THE CHIMES

Dale Fredriks, Writer

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Biola volleyball earned themselves a leg-up on The Master’s University Mustangs with a huge win over them on Oct. 29, but they could not rest on their laurels, as they needed to win the next two matches in order to secure their berth into the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics tournament. The first of those two matches put the Eagles against the San Diego Christian College Hawks, who Biola dispatched in three sets, improving their overall record to 22-9 and 12-3 in the Golden State Athletic Conference.

A slow start

Set one started slowly for the Eagles, as five of the first six points that San Diego Christian earned came due to Biola errors. That allowed the Hawks to have a 6-5 lead before Biola went on a six point run to give them the lead, where they stayed for the rest of the set. They went on to a relatively comfortable 25-17 win, thanks to 14 kills and a .267 kill percentage compared to the Hawks’ seven kills and negative .038 kill percentage.

Set two stayed close all the way until Biola had a 13-11 lead, when they exploded on a 12-3 point run that finished off the set at a decisive final score of 25-14. The Eagles cleaned up their offense even more than in the first set, finishing the second with an excellent .348 kill percentage while forcing SDCC to hit in the negative again.

Set three looked to be all Biola early on, as they jumped out to a quick 16-8 lead. The Hawks fought back late into the set, closing the gap to only two points as Biola led 22-20, forcing head coach Aaron Seltzer to call a timeout and refocus his team. It worked, as Biola shut down the comeback by scoring three of the final four points to win 25-21 and grab their 14th three-set victory of the season.

Jewett dominates

Sophomore opposite Stephanie Jewett had herself a quality night on the right side of the net, leading the team with 10 kills, a number that ties her season high. Jewett has averaged 1.51 kills per set this season but helped to improve that number by getting an average of 3.33 kills per set against the Hawks.

“The whole team played really well together, so definitely having a solid foundation of really great passing and the setters did an awesome job of keeping tempo the whole match,” Jewett said. “I would not have been able to do it without everything working perfectly together.”

Jewett got support in the kills column from all the usuals, as sophomore outside Hannah van Warmerdam contributed eight kills, freshman outside Alyx Dunham had seven and sophomore Karly Dantuma had six. The setting team of senior Tori Moons and sophomore Brinley Beresford did a great job of mixing up San Diego’s blockers, as they finished with 37 assists, nearly one and a half times the amount of assists the Hawks had.

One more match stands between Biola and a chance to play in their final NAIA tournament before the move to the National Collegiate Athletics Association next year. The Eagles head to Vanguard University to face the Lions on Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. Vanguard lost to Biola after taking the Eagles to five sets in their first meeting this season in Chase Gymnasium, so the Eagles will need to be prepared for a fight on the road.