A Fight for Five

Submitted by: Christy Cain - October 28th, 2014

 

heidiBy Christy Cain

(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) The Westmont women’s volleyball team put on what could be considered their best team performances tonight, despite the five game loss to Cal State University San Marcos (19-25, 25-18, 25-22, 20-25, 17-15).

“I told the girls before the match that they better buckle down and be ready for battle because we are a very good team, but San Marcos is also a very good team. They did not disappoint,” exclaimed head coach Patti Cook.

Despite the loss, tonight’s match was the kind that most teams hope for in the middle of the season—one where everything seemed to click. It was not a match marked by individual performances, but a total and complete team effort.

“Our setters did a really nice job of setting consistent, hittable balls the entire match. Heidi’s defense was incredible and she came up with some big plays,” reflected Cook. Thompson and Nestlerode combined for 54 assists on the night. Just when it looked like a dug ball was too far out of reach, one of them would come sprinting through and get a great, playable set up to their pins. Hustle was the name of their game tonight.

It was because of the setter’s hustle plays and smart decisions that the offense was able to function at a high level. As a setter, you want to give the ball to the “hot hands” on the court. Tonight, outside hitters Taylor Beckman and Madison Serrano were on fire.

“Our outsides were phenomenal. We have not had a match yet where both Madison and Taylor have hit well. And for this match they did just that,” raved Cook. Beckman finished with 19 kills while Serrano was right on her heels with 16. While they had standout performances, it was evident that every pin hitter on the court was transitioning well from offense to defense and making plays happen.

In a highly emotional and long match, it would be easy for either team to get rattled and shaken up by the speed of the game. But the Westmont Warriors were anchored by their defense. Troesh (23 digs), Serrano (18 digs), Beckman (13 digs) and Thompson (13 digs) each were stopped and ready to make play after play. “Kami was read San Marcos’s hitters very well and consistently got herself in the right spot,” reflected Cook.

“We battled well. I wish that we could have kept our service errors down, but other than that I wouldn’t change anything about the match except the outcome. We are playing really good volleyball right now and I’m not as disappointed with this loss as I could be because we played at a high level. Unfortunately we couldn’t make a couple of points that were deciding factors in the match, but overall I think that we played pretty close to the best of our ability,” closed out Cook.

The Warriors (15-12, 6-5 GSAC) will be at home in Murchison Gym again this Friday October 31 as they take on William Jessup University at 7PM.

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