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Westmont Now 27-0

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 23rd, 2016
Mila Maricic

Taylor Beckman produced 12 kills to help lead the #1 Westmont Volleyball to a three-game sweep of Arizona Christian (25-21, 25-15, 25-20). Beckman also had 19 serve receptions without an error and eight digs.

With the win, the NAIA’s only undefeated team improved to 27-0 overall and 12-0 in GSAC play.

The Firestorm jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the first set and maintained a lead until back-to-back-to-back kills by Beckman gave Westmont a 13-12 advantage. Still tied at 21, the Warriors’ benefited from a Firestorm attack error before Sam Neely and Mila Maricic produced a block to make the score 23-21.

After an Arizona Christian timeout, Neely delivered a kill to give the Warriors set point and force the Firestorm to call timeout again. Another attack error by the Firestorm gave Westmont a one-set-to-none advantage.

The second set went Westmont’s way from the start. The Warriors jumped out to a 7-1 lead and never looked back. Westmont produced a .357 attack percentage connecting for 13 kills on 28 attempts with just three errors.

[box score]

Dahlberg Leads Warriors to Win

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 22nd, 2016
Courtney Crosby

Sophomore middle blocker Libby Dahlberg tallied 11 kills for the Warriors and sophomore right side hitter Sam Neely added nine more as #1 Westmont swept the Hawks of San Diego Christian (11-13, 3-8 GSAC) in a Golden State Athletic Conference match-up. The undefeated Warriors are now 26-0 overall and 11-0 in GSAC play.

Defensively, Dahlberg tallied a total of six blocks – three solo and three assists. Dahlberg leads the GSAC in both hitting percentage (.389) and in blocks per set (1.25).

In the back row, Courtney Crosby led the Warriors with six digs while Taylor Beckman had five and Alexa Nestlerode and Kami Troesh each added four.

Westmont Tagged as Number One

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 18th, 2016

For the first time in program history, Westmont Volleyball is the top-ranked team in the NAIA. The Warriors, who are the only undefeated team out of 219 NAIA programs, have earned their number one ranking by producing a 25-0 record.

So, what does the number one team do after learning they have moved to the top of the list?

“My team is playing freeze tag in the gym,” said Westmont head coach Patti Cook, “and I need to get back in there and be the referee.”

Cook is determined to help her team keep everything in perspective.

“The temptation would be to feel pressure, but we would be foolish to let that get to us,” reflected Cook. “Nothing has changed on our end. We are still going to play our own game and play every single match like it is the most important match of the season. We need to continue to keep our heads down and stay humble and hungry.”

Volleyball Streak Reaches 25

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 15th, 2016
Sam Neely

Westmont Volleyball, ranked at number two, reached the milestone of 25 straight wins with a 3-0 victory over Menlo (25-10, 25-15, 25-19). The Warriors improved to 10-0 in the Golden State Athletic Conference standings while the Oaks fell to 11-13 overall and 3-7 in conference play.

Westmont, which remains the only undefeated team in the NAIA, is three wins away from tying the program record for most wins in the regular season. The 1992 team, which was coached by Cathy Rex and featured Kelly Barnes, Cassandra Londo, Anne Malmberg and Jennifer Marzahl, went 28-4 in regular season play.

The 2016 Warriors have now tied the 1988 squad for the second most regular season wins. Lisa Cvach led that team to a 25-5 regular season record behind Joanna Rathburn, Felicia Chalmers, Susie Odell and Brenda Trejos.

In today’s victory, Westmont recorded a .309 attack percentage while holding the Oaks to .086. Libby Dahlberg and Samantha Neely each notched 10 kills while posted hitting percentages of .556 and .529 respectively. Over the last two matches, Dahlberg has tallied 26 kills in 40 attempts for a hitting percentage of .600 and 3.71 kills per set.

[box score]

Warriors Win Despite More Melancholy Mood

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 14th, 2016
Jessica McCann

Despite improving its record to 24-0 (9-0 in conference) with a 3-1 Golden State Athletic Conference victory over William Jessup (9-12, 2-7 GSAC), Westmont Volleyball head coach Patti Cook was singing the blues about the play of her team.

“We did not play up to our potential,” noted the undefeated coach. “I thought we were a little lackadaisical. It showed pretty early in the match and William Jessup definitely took advantage of that. They are a well-coached team, they have a lot of fire and they are pretty scrappy. I felt like we didn’t come prepared to play our best.”

After taking the first two sets by identical comfortable margins of 25-16, the Warriors’ had trouble harmonizing in the third set and lost 25-23. It was the first time this season that Westmont has lost a set in Golden State Athletic Conference play.

“We just didn’t play our game,” lamented Cook. “We were playing a little timid and we can’t get into that. Once we were playing timid, our passing started to fall apart. Our hitters were doing a nice job of tipping early on, then William Jessup adjusted to it and rather than getting back to being very aggressive with high swings, we stayed kind of timid. It isn’t our game. It’s not how we like to play. William Jessup did a nice job of trying to force us into that and we didn’t answer back until the fourth set.”

[box score]

Repeat Sweep of GSAC Awards, Troesh Honored Nationally

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 11th, 2016
POWs

Senior Kami Troesh has been named the NAIA and GSAC Volleyball Defender of the Week and for the second time this season, Westmont has swept the Golden State Athletic Conference Volleyball Player of the Week awards. Senior outside hitter Jessica McCann of Lemoore was named GSAC Attacker of the Week and senior Alexa Nestlerode of Saugus picked up the GSAC Setter of the Week honors to complete the hat trick.

The Warriors, who are second ranked in the NAIA and possess a record of 23-0, played five matches last week. On Tuesday, Westmont swept The Master’s to complete the first round of GSAC play with a conference mark of 8-0. A four-match road trip to Iowa accounted for the rest of last week’s schedule. While in the Hawkeye State, the Warriors picked up wins against the College of Saint Mary (Neb.), #11 Dordt (Iowa), Concordia (Neb.) and Northwestern (Iowa).

McCann recorded 49 kills over the five matches and posted an attack percentage of .248. Against Saint Mary, McCann tallied a 13 kills and made just one attack error in 22 attempts, producing an attack percentage of .545.

Leaving Iowa with Lessons Learned and without Regrets

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 8th, 2016
Photo by Brad Elliott

With two more wins today, Westmont Volleyball has continued its historic run through the regular season, improving its record to 23-0. The Warriors concluded a four-game Iowa road trip with 3-1 victories over Concordia of Nebraska (25-21, 22-25, 25-22, 25-15) and Northwestern of Iowa (25-14, 25-14, 23-25, 25-21).

Today’s wins followed a pair of victories yesterday over Saint Mary (Neb.) and #11 Dort. The former in three sets and the latter in five.

“Both Northwestern and Concordia were really strong teams today,” remarked Cook. “They definitely challenged us, along with Dordt (Iowa) yesterday. Those three matches were everything we had hoped for and more. We came out here to get challenged and they definitely pushed us to play at a very high level.

“It was a great learning trip for us – learning how we respond when we travel a long distance, how we respond when we play teams at a high level with tall players and how we respond when we get down a set. This was a huge confidence booster.”

In the match against Concordia (13-14), Westmont posted a .284 attack percentage and held the Bulldogs to .193. Taylor Beckman and Libby Dahlberg led the way with 15 and 14 kills respectively. Jessica McCann and Sam Neely each added nine.

[Westmont-Concordia box] [Westmont-Northwestern box]

Warriors Win Two in Hawkeye State

Submitted by: Ron Smith - October 7th, 2016
Emma Harrah

Westmont Volleyball, the only undefeated team in the NAIA, took its winning streak on the road and improved its record to 21-0 by taking the first two of four games in the state of Iowa.

The #2 Warriors, playing at Dordt College’s De Witt Gym, picked up a 3-0 (25-12, 25-17, 25-12) win against the College of Saint Mary from Nebraska. An hour and one-half later, the Warriors took on their eleventh-ranked hosts and won a five-set thriller 15-25, 25-22, 25-23, 21-25, 15-11.

In the opener, Westmont posted a .394 attack percentage while holding the Flames (6-11) to .056. The Warriors also benefitted from five blocks and went unblocked by Saint Mary.

Westmont outside hitter Jessica McCann had a monster game, tallying 13 kills over the three-set game and posting a .545 attack percentage. Fellow outside hitter Taylor Beckman added seven kills and hit at a .500 rate. Right-side hitter Sam Neely added six kills with a .333 attack percentage. Libero Kami Troesh guarded the back row for the Warriors, tallying 14 serve receptions and 22 digs.

[Westmont-Saint Mary box] [Wesmtont-Dordt box]

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