The volleyball team earned its first conference win on Oct. 12, 3-0 sets against Whitman College after a loss on Oct. 11 against Whitworth University.
The team started these two matches with a new plan after weeks of losing to opposing teams. Head coach Shane Kimura created a new line up for the team that really showed off the talent of the team.
On Oct. 11 the team started off slow with junior Kailana Ritte-Camera led the team with six kills. However, as the sets continued to go the team started to get more in syncs and communicated better. The Wildcats lost three sets in a row with scores of (25-9), (25-20), (25-19).
“Whitworth is a great team and always has been,” junior Victoria Thompson said. “It was the first night of the new line up and in the beginning we were still trying to figure things out since we only got a week of practice in the new positions. But towards the end we got it figured out! Granted, we didn’t win, but we saw that we could.”
The team played again on Oct. 12 against Whitman, where they used their new line up to its full impact to a win of three close sets in a row with scores of (27-25), (25-23), (25-23). Thompson led the team with 15 kills followed by Ritte-Camera with nine kills and freshman Sam Hammons with eight kills. Junior Audrey Frazier led the team with 22 set assists followed by freshman Casie Gaza with 17.
“One of the major differences that the team saw on Saturday was a new lineup.” Gaza said. “I think that having [senior] Kelsey Ludin back was a major part of our win because it gave us more flexibility regarding different lineups. We also played a lot more coherent this weekend and we were a lot more in sync regarding plays, communication and what the goal was for this weekend.”
The team quote that they use often, “Whatever we do, we do together” and this weekend the showed not only that they do work together, but they can also win together.
“I think we just needed that reminder of what a great team we are, and Saturday’s game was a definite confident boost for us,” Thompson said. “Now that we know we can do it, I know that we will carry it over. Our biggest challenge is keeping the consistency from start to finish.”
The team goes up against Puget Sound University on Oct. 18 and Pacific Lutheran University on Oct. 19. Both games will be at home at 7 p.m.
By Stephanie Hofmann/sports editor
Tyson Takeuchi/Senior sports photographer
Junior Courtney Wanamaker serves the ball during the second set against Whitworth University. The team is staying at home for the next two matches against Puget Sound and Pacific Lutheran.