Down goes the Gaels, Tigers bounce back
After their first loss in 10 games, women’s volleyball bounced back and defeated Saint Mary’s this past Saturday. The Tigers shut out the Gaels in three quick sets to improve to 3-1 in the West Coast Conference and 14-3, overall.
Saint Mary’s trailed closely in the first two sets, but Pacific completely dominated in the third, and final, set to take the shutout. The Gaels took an early lead in the first set, stretching it to a five-point margin before the Tigers started making a comeback. Pacific began capitalizing on the attack errors, as outside hitter Lexi Elman ’17 started closing the gap.
The Gaels held on to their lead by a mere two-point thread, 19-17, and the tug of war began. Middle blocker Alicja Wilk ’17 posted a kill and then put up a block alongside teammate Kat Schulz ’16, keeping Pacific within reach. The Tigers tied the game at 23 on an attack error by Saint Mary’s. Elman put up the final blow, closing out the first set, 25-23.
In the second set, the Gaels came out on top once again. The score continued back and forth throughout the entire set. Tied again at 23, Elman set a rocket attack to the other side of the net to give Pacific the edge. Elman and middle blocker Gillian Howard ’15 countered Saint Mary’s attack, closing out the second set for the Tigers.
Pacific quickly dominated in the last set, going on a 12-6 run to silence the Gaels for good. Notably, libero Katrin Gotterba ’18 tallied three aces, Elman posted 13 kills and Howard followed suit with six blocks.
Also, setter Kimmy Whitson ’16 achieved her first double-double of the season, leading the team with 13 digs and 28 assists.
The Tigers continue their home stretch as they host No. 10 BYU on Thursday at 7 p.m. in the Alex G. Spanos Center. On Friday, they take on No. 23 San Diego at the same time and place. Pacific looks to restart a new win streak and continue remaining a force in the conference.
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