No. 13 Cal Poly Holds Off UH Women's Volleyball
The University of Hawai'i women's volleyball team fought their way back into the match, but came up short forcing a fifth set as No. 13 Cal Poly held off the Rainbow Wahine in four sets, 25-19, 25-18, 21-25, 27-25 on Saturday night at a sold-out Robert A. Mott Athletics Center in San Luis Obispo, Calif.
(Hawaii Athletics) - The University of Hawai'i women's volleyball team fought their way back into the match, but came up short forcing a fifth set as No. 13 Cal Poly held off the Rainbow Wahine in four sets, 25-19, 25-18, 21-25, 27-25 on Saturday night at a sold-out Robert A. Mott Athletics Center in San Luis Obispo, Calif. In a battle between the Big West's unbeatens, it was the Mustangs who came out on top, snapping UH's five-match win streak. McKenna Granato led UH with 14 kills and Sarah Liva recorded career-highs in both kills and blocks, while Norene Iosia recorded her third triple-double of the season. With the win, the Mustangs improve to 16-1 overall and 6-0 in conference, while Hawai'i falls to 9-6 overall and 5-1 in the Big West.
For the second-straight night, Granato notched a double-double with 14 kills and 13 digs. She also added two service aces in the match as well. It marked the 11th time this season that she's had double-digit kills and it marked her seventh double-double this year. It is the 10th time this season that she has led UH with a match-high in kills.
After setting a new career-high in kills last night at UC Santa Barbara, Liva upped career-high again to12 kills. She hit a team-high .500 hitting percentage with just three errors in 18 swings. She also added a career-high six blocks.
Iosia had 11 kills with 24 assists while tying her career-high with 21 digs. She also added a service ace. The junior setter/outside hitter already has recorded 10 double-doubles and three triple-doubles this season.
Setter Faith Ma'afala also tallied a double-double for the sixth time this season. She issued out 31 assists while scooping up 12 digs. Libero Tita Akiu recorded 14 digs and had four assists and a service ace in the match.
In the first set, neither team could produce more that a two-point lead, until Cal Poly went up, 19-16 on four-straight UH errors (three hitting and one handling). From that point, the Mustangs started to roll. In all, UH committed 10 hitting errors as the Mustangs out hit the 'Bows percentage-wise .282-to-.083 in the first set, as Cal Poly took Set 1, 25-19.
The Mustangs led by as many as four points three different times early in Set 2. But the 'Bows would battle their way back getting a three-point run to tie the set at 9-9 off a Angel Gaskin kill. UH would be able to tie it again at 10-10, but the Mustangs started to pull away and eventually won the second set, 25-18.
Hawai'i jumped out to a 7-3 lead to start the third set. UH would hold the lead early on, but the Mustangs would finally catch the 'Bows at 13-13. Cal Poly would then overtake UH on the next play to leapfrog UH to a 14-13. After trading sideouts back-and-forth. UH see-sawed back in front to capture the lead at 17-16. UH would go up 19-16 and they held off the Mustangs to close out the set, 25-21. With the set win, UH snapped Cal Poly's set win streak at 21 and their three-set sweep win streak at six. UH was the first Big West team to be able to take a set off the Mustangs.
In the fourth set, Cal Poly led much of the way, and were up by four points late at 22-18. But after a timeout, Hawai'i once again mounted a rally that was highlighted by back-to-back blocks to close to within one at 21-22. UH averted a pair of Cal Poly match points and actually took a 25-24 lead to serve for set point to force a fifth set. But the Mustangs responded by scoring the final three points to take the fourth set, 27-25 for the win.
Cal Poly won their 17th straight home match at the Mott Athletics Center dating back to 2016. Hawai'i had no answer for Torrey Van Winden who finished the night with 29 kills, hitting .344 (29-7-64). Setter Avalon Denecochea had a match-high 49 assists and Katherine Brouker posted a match-high 26 digs.
As a team, UH was able to rack up 63 kills to Cal Poly's 55. But the Mustangs had the edge in hitting percentage, .257-to-.179 and in digs, 76-to-73. Cal Poly also had one more block than the 'Bows, 10.0-to-9.0.
Tonight's match was a sellout, Cal Poly's first since last year's match against Hawai'i.
The Rainbow Wahine return home to host a pair of Big West matches. UH will take on Long Beach State on Friday, October 12 followed by CSUN on Saturday, October 13. Both matches are slated to start at 7:00 p.m.