SPOKANE, Wash. – The Whitworth volleyball team completed its season sweep of the Linfield club with a three-set victory over the Wildcats 25-19, 25-19, 25-17 Friday night at the Whitworth Fieldhouse.
The Pirates, ranked 24th in Division III, won their third straight match to maintain their lead in the Northwest Conference standings with a 10-1 league record, 15-5 overall. The Wildcats, meanwhile, dropped their third consecutive match to slip to 3-8 in the NWC and 8-12 overall.
Kelsey Ludin (Sr., Bozeman, Mont.) registered six of her team-high nine kills in a back-and-forth first set that featured seven ties. But once Whitworth took a 13-12 lead on a kill by Kaimi Rocha, the Pirates never looked back, closing the set on a 12-7 run.
Whitworth used more well-timed runs in the second set to take a 2-0 lead in the match. After Linfield tallied the first point on a kill by Kailana Ritte-Camara (Jr., Molokai, Hawaii), the Pirates rattled off six straight points to jump out to a 6-1 lead. Another 6-0 run stretched the lead to ten points, which proved to be insurmountable for the visiting Wildcats.
Both clubs were most accurate in the middle set; the Pirates registered a blistering .542 hitting percentage while the ‘Cats hit .370.
Early in the final set, Linfield used two kills apiece from Ludin, Ritte-Camara and Victoria Thompson (Jr., Newberg, Ore.) to take its biggest lead of the match at 10-7. The Pirates quickly flipped the advantage with a 10-2 run. Even a Linfield timeout could not cool the Whitworth attack, as the Pirates scored eight of the last 13 points to secure the win. Kristine Kardell had the last word, knocking down one of her seven kills for the final point of the night.
Kaimi Rocha led the Pirate effort with a match-high 15 kills. Twin sister Kai’ipo added ten kills and setter Bree Riddle spread around 45 assists.
For Linfield, Ludin had nine kills and Ritte-Camara added seven. Audrey Frazier (Jr., Albany, Ore.) contributed 23 assists and 11 digs, both team highs.
NEXT: The Wildcats conclude their eastern Washington swing with 7 p.m. match Saturday night against the Whitman Missionaries.
7 kills, 7 digs, 1 block assist
Director of Sports Information
McMinnville, OR 97128