The last time the Master's faced the Hawks they lost in four games in Fullerton. This time around the Mustangs hosted the Hawks and were ready for a different result, but in the end the Hawks were the ones to improve their play.
In game one the Mustangs found themselves down 10-15 as they struggled to connect in the middle and had several miscues with communication. At last Jillian Anderson put down a quick set from Brook Bekendam to get 15-20 but the celebration was short-lived as the Hawks came right back with a kill of their own.
More back and forth play ensued, with the Mustangs unable to get past the 5 point barrier- every time they got one to go, whether on a Dougherty kill down the line, or another Anderson hit down the middle, they followed it up with a blocking error, or inability to return a Hawk attack.
In game two the even play continued through the first 12 points, but then it was the Mustangs who began to pull away. With a big hit from Tori Callihan to the back line the Mustangs went up 12-8. Another great hit by Callihan several plays later took them to 14-11. Two hitting errors by the Hawks left the the visitors down 5 and forced to take a timeout of their own. The quick session seemed to work as Hope immediately ripped off four points and forced TMC to call a timeout to try to regain composure and protect their now one point lead. Out of the timeout however, the Hawks had a service ace, which was followed by a Mustang hitting error. With their 5 point cushion gone, the Mustangs found themselves back to playing even with the Hawks. They had two great blocks, but also had two service errors. With the score at 21-21 it was anyone's game. The Hawks took the momentum and finished the game for two wins in two sets.
Game three started with a quick kill by Victoria Callihan. The Hawks then quickly regained the momentum they'd had in game two however, largely on the back of the Mustang's failure to cover at the net. Down 3-6, TMC went to Sam Dougherty outside to get the side out. Once again unfortuantely, the hosts were unable to string plays together and the visitors took the reins over the next several plays.
For a short time it looked as though the Mustangs might come back. With the score at 7-10 the Mustangs were saved from suffering a service error when the Hawks were out of rotation. Coming off that play Dougherty again put one down from the outside and then Jenna Kapusicinski put one down- for three straight points for TMC. The visitors took the next two points and looked for a streak of their own, but another Dougherty slam prevented it. The tally didn't do much more than that however, as the Mustangs did not build on the point and quickly found themselves down 16-21. With a three game sweep staring them in the face, Coach Blanken called for a timeout.
Coming out of the break the teams traded points, pushing the score to 19-23. A Hawk kill took them to game point. A kill by Dougherty only delayed things a play as Hope used a kill on the outside line to take the game 25-20.
With the 3-0 sweet, it was the Hawks, not the Mustangs, improving on past performances.