McMINNVILLE, Ore. – Linfield snagged a first-set win, but Pacific rallied with three straight victories to earn a season sweep of the Wildcats for the first time since 1996. The Boxers rolled by the scores of 17-25, 25-20, 25-20, 25-20 Wednesday night inside Ted Wilson Gymnasium.
Pacific’s Marie Rewick had a double-double with 20 kills and 20 digs while Leimomi Hookano led Linfield with 14 kills.
Linfield scored the first two points of the night and never trailed en route to the 25-17 opening-set victory. After a 6-6 tie, four straight Wildcat points broke the game open. Back-to-back service aces from Kailana Ritte-Camara (Jr., Molokai, Hawaii) pushed the spread to eight points, 18-10, and the end looked in sight. But some sloppy play by the home team allowed the Boxers to stick around longer than Linfield would have liked, although Pacific got no closer than five points.
Victoria Thompson (Jr., Newberg, Ore.) had three kills and two solo blocks to pace the ‘Cats in the first frame, while the Boxers collectively committed seven errors to cancel out seven kills.
Pacific took a 6-2 lead to open the second set. A Hookano kill weaved its way through two defenders and dropped to the floor, sparking a 3-0 run that pulled Linfield to within one. The Boxers responded with an 8-3 blitz, however, to reclaim a sizeable lead and then hold off the Wildcats, 25-20.
Hookano found her groove on the left side of the net, slamming down seven kills. But defensively, after registering 3 ½ blocks in the first set, the Wildcats had none in the second. Pacific’s Rewick and Alexa Block took full advantage, combining for eight kills.
With both teams looking to seize momentum after the break, it was the Boxers who delivered in the second of three identical 25-20 winning scores. Pacific held a five-point lead, but the ‘Cats clawed back, eventually taking the lead at 13-12. Things remained neck-and-neck until the end, when the Boxers closed on a 6-0 run, including three consecutive kills from Rewick.
A close start to the decisive fourth set quickly gave way to an easy Boxer victory. Linfield suffered through its worst offense of the match, hitting a paltry -.036 and tallying six kills to Pacific’s 16.
In addition to Rewick’s 20 kills, Block finished with 15 successful attacks for Pacific. The Boxers posted 11 blocks on the night, including six from Mariah McHolland, who set the program’s single-season record of the rally-scoring era.
Audrey Frazier (Jr., Albany, Ore.) spread around a match-high 36 assists for the Wildcats, and Courtney Uyeda (Soph., Honolulu, Hawaii) and Kailana Ritte-Camara (Jr., Molokai, Hawaii) dug 26 and 21 balls, respectively.
'CAT SCRATCH: Linfield promoted breast cancer awareness with a "Think Pink" match...players wore pink socks and hair ribbons...the 'Cats are now 8-4 when they win the opening set...Linfield has a 3-12 record in the fourth set.
AHEAD: The Wildcats hit the road one last time before playing their final two matches at home. Saturday, Linfield travels to Tacoma, Wash., to take on 14th-ranked Puget Sound. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Director of Sports Information
McMinnville, OR 97128