Volleyball is Iowa-bound

Following a win over La Sierra University, Biola heads to the NAIA tournament one last time.

Dale Fredriks, Writer

For the 10th straight season, the Biola volleyball team will fly to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics final tournament site. They advanced after winning in the opening round of the tournament on Nov. 19 against the La Sierra University Golden Eagles in four sets.

Biola faced this La Sierra team once before this season, on Sept. 2 at the Hope International Labor Day Tournament, when Biola came away with the hard-fought five set victory.

“We had plenty of time to prepare for them, so we were not caught off-guard. We kind of knew what they were going to do,” head coach Aaron Seltzer said. “So I think a lot of those things went in our favor.”

The Eagles came out of the gates firing on all cylinders in set one, as they took it by a score of 25-10. Fundamentally solid play lifted them to one of their best sets this season, as they finished with a .519 kill percentage combined with impeccable play from the back row trio of junior libero Tess Van Grouw and freshmen defensive specialists Kaitlin O’Brien and Anna Houser.

In set two, La Sierra proved why they made it to the NAIA playoffs and fought back hard, eventually taking the set 25-23. Biola’s kill percentage decreased to only .086, and they had numerous service and serve reception errors.

The next two sets signaled a return to form for Biola, winning both in a decisive manner to give the Eagles the 3-1 match win and send them back to Sioux City, Iowa for the final time as NAIA competitors.

Pool play begins for Biola on Nov. 29, when they face off against MidAmerica Nazarene University at 11 a.m. Central Standard Time. Biola needs to be one of the top two teams in their pool of four in order to advance to the bracket round of 16 starting Dec. 2.

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