Women's Volleyball: Sagehens Win in 5th Set for Fourth Straight Match

Women's Volleyball: Sagehens Win in 5th Set for Fourth Straight Match

CLAREMONT, CA. – The five-set victory streak continues for the Pomona-Pitzer Women's Volleyball Team as the Sagehens silenced the Whittier College Poets 3-2 (21-25, 16-25, 25-20, 25-23, 15-9), coming back from a 2-0 deficit to earn their fourth straight victory. Despite struggling in the first two sets, the Sagehens managed to limit the Poets' offense in the third set, holding them to a .000 hitting percentage, and out-hitting them in the fourth and final set. Julia Zwaal and Isabel Kelly tied with the team lead with 13 kills each while Kayla Krilove led with six block assists. Sophie Janssen delivered 27 digs and Adrienne Tong created 25 assists.

Season Impact: The victory improves the Sagehens' record to 9-3 in SCIAC play and 12-12 overall. The Ssagehens are 7-0 in SCIAC matches that extend into the fifth set.

After dropping the first two sets due to lack of cohesion on offense and some focused hitting from the Poets, the Sagehens looked to battle back from the deficit. Leading 4-3 early in the set, the Sagehens found their spark on defense and they scored two straight points off blocks. Later after the Poets tied the match 8-8, the Sagehens retaliated starting with a huge spike by Zwaal followed by two attacking errors from the Poets. Brooke Carlson capped the rally with a giant solo block on Poets' Abby Salmon to lead 12-8. Ahead 14-13, the Sagehens began to pull away with a 7-1 run that ended with an emphatic assisted block by Chloe Kerstein and Addo-Ashong to lead 21-14. The Poets tried to climb back in, but Zwaal ended the set with a kill to make it 25-20.

The fourth set opened up similarly as the previous set as the Sagehens pounced to a 4-1 lead early. The Poets tied the set with three straight points, capped by a blocking error from Kelly. Kelly quickly redeemed herself, delivering a booming spike off a toss by Tong to make it 5-4. The Poets responded in spectacular fashion, going on a 5-1 tear to lead 10-6, but the Sagehens refused to relent. Britnie Casillas played some beautiful passes off the bench to spur the Sagehens' attack, finding Addo-Ashong to cut the lead 10-7 and later assisting Zwaal and Carlson to tie the set. With a 16-15 lead, the Sagehens took advantage of a service error by the Poets followed by a big hit from Carlson and then an attack error by the Poets to lead 19-15. The Poets tried to cut into the lead, managing to trail only 23-21, but a combined block from Krilove and Kelly brought the Sagehens one point away from tying the match. Kerstein finished the job to send the match into the fifth set.

As per tradition in the fifth set, the Sagehens' offense came out firing out of the game, overwhelming a fatigued Poets side above the net. Jumping to a 5-3 lead, the Sagehens pounced to a 6-3 lead off a kill by Addo-Ashong followed by a spike from Carlson. After Casillas gave up a service error to end their scoring run, she made up for her mistake with a quick toss to Addo-Ashong for the kill to put the Sagehens ahead 8-4. The two sides started to trade points from here on out, but it was too late for the Poets to climb back up as Isabel Kelly closed the match with a kill to win it 15-9.

Up Next: The Sagehens will return home on Saturday, October 20 to host Chapman University at 1:00 p.m.