Photo by Abram Hammer / THE CHIMES[File]
After an undefeated three-game road trip in Hawaii, volleyball returned home to Chase Gymnasium on Friday to take on PacWest foe Notre Dame de Namur University. The Eagles remained consistent throughout the match en route to a sweep of the Argonauts.
“We defensively played really well, we blocked well, we kept their hitters in check well,” said head coach Aaron Seltzer.
The Eagles asserted their dominance early in the first set, taking a 12-9 lead on a smash from senior middle blocker Sierra Bauder. A four-point run later in the set put Biola ahead 20-16 led by an ace from sophomore libero Kaitlin O’Brien. They closed the set out 25-20 on another Bauder kill.
The Argonauts proved much tougher in the second set, but Biola took a quick 16-11 lead on a kill from junior outside hitter Sabrina Winslow. NDNU clawed back though, closing the gap to one point at 17-16 to force an Eagles timeout. The timeout worked, and Biola went on a 8-6 run to win the set 25-22, with the final point coming on a nicely placed tip from Winslow.
“A big thing we were talking about tonight was instead of waiting to see what a team looks like, just setting our own pace and putting our foot down right off the bat instead of slowly getting into it,” said Winslow.
Looking to close out the sweep, Biola came out focused in the third set, taking a 10-6 advantage on a beautifully placed kill to the back corner from Winslow. Sophomore setter Vanessa Garcia then took over from the service line, recording three straight aces to give her team a 17-8 lead. They won the set 25-14 on a kill from senior opposite hitter Karly Dantuma to close out the straight-set win.
“We took a long break, took three days off. Last week was a grind and this was our only chance to really breathe for a second, then we went hard yesterday and stressed every match from here on out is our last,” Seltzer said.
Winslow led the offense with 15 kills followed by Dantuma with 12. Garcia tallied 25 assists, and senior setter Brinley Beresford put up 19. Sophomore libero Sami Hover led the defense with 18 digs, while senior outside hitter Hannah Van Warmerdam put up a solid 13 digs.
The Eagles (17-5, 13-2 PacWest) return to action tomorrow at Concordia University Irvine at 5 p.m.