Biola/Red Lion Summer Slam: Day 1
August 22, 2013
La Mirada, Calif. – Two days ago, The Master’s College volleyball team learned the NAIA branded them with a historic No. 9 ranking on the 2013 Tachikara-NAIA Volleyball Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll.
Today, they fought for it.
The Lady Mustangs opened their season at the Biola/Red Lion Hotel Anaheim Summer Slam. TMC faced off against Lewis-Clark State (ID) at 9 a.m. and ended the day in a match against Davenport (MI) at 3:00 p.m.
#9 The Master’s College: 3 – (RV) Lewis-Clark State : 2
In their 9:00 a.m. match, the five games the Lady Mustangs battled in against the Lewis-Clark State Warriors were just the wake-up call the squad needed for its 2013 season opener.
Despite having the lead through the majority of the set, the Lady Mustangs fell to the Warriors 24-23 in game one. With the score tied at 22-22, Lewis-Clark finished the set with a 3-1 rally thanks to a TMC attack error and two well-placed kills from Marissa Verduci and Niruka Toribo.
The Lady Mustangs answered back in set two with a 25-16 victory. The initial portion of the second set resembled a seesaw as both squads tied the score on five separate occasions (6-6, 7-7, 8-8, 9-9, and 14-14). TMC finally exploded with an 11-2 run that ultimately sealed the set at 25-16.
Game three kept everyone watching on the edge of their seats as the Lady Mustangs topped the Warriors 27-25 in dramatic fashion. In a set that featured 13 ties and five lead changes, the Lady Mustangs battled until the very end when Stacey Jones (Scottsdale, AZ) delivered a decisive kill that was immediately followed by a bad set from Lewis-Clark’s Trenisha Doyle.
TMC failed to keep any momentum in the fourth set as the Lady Mustangs tied the match early on (1-1, 2-2), but never once caught up with the Warriors’ commanding lead. Lewis-Clark State took the set 25-16, forcing a fifth frame.
Motivated to start their season with a victory, the Lady Mustangs controlled the fifth game until the Warriors rallied and brought the score to 12-10. Sam Dougherty (Madera, CA) led the Lady Mustangs’ final charge by tallying three kills, ending the set at 15-12.
Picking up where she left off last season, Dougherty led the Lady Mustangs with 26 kills, finishing with a .288 attack percentage. Ashley Newton’s (Henderson, NV) nine kills earned her a team-high .381 attack percentage. Aubrey Bekendam (Orland, CA) notched 47 assists, while Rebecca Peluffo (La Crescenta, CA) and Aubrey Pyburn (Burbank, CA) each posted 15 digs.
#9 The Master’s College: 2 – (RV) Davenport: 3
The Davenport Panthers seemed to be of little problem early on as the Lady Mustangs took the first set 25-21, followed by a 25-12 shellacking in the second game.
However, Davenport overcame the odds in the third set and rallied with four consecutive points to lead TMC 24-23. The Lady Mustangs couldn’t silence the Panthers as Davenport went on to win the set with a final score of 27-25, forcing a fourth game.
The fourth game of the match mirrored the third set as TMC controlled the lead for the better part of the entire match until Davenport’s Hannah Stone tied the match at 22-22 with a strategic kill. From there, the Lady Mustangs defense collapsed as the Panthers rallied with three unanswered points, ending the set at 25-22, and forcing the fifth game.
Davenport rocketed out of the gates with a 6-2 start in the final frame. Unfortunately, the Lady Mustangs were only able to muster five more points, easily eclipsed by the Panthers' nine. The 15-7 win secured Davenport's first victory of the year while handing the Lady Mustangs' their first loss, evening their overall record at 1-1.
Dougherty led the squad in scoring with 20 kills, Bekendam chipped in 41 assists, and Peluffo tallied 22 digs.
The Lady Mustangs have their work cut out for them tomorrow as they square off against the sixth-ranked College of Idaho at 11 a.m. before closing things out in a match against future GSAC member, William Jessup, at 3 p.m.