Pirates Split on Friday in California

Pirates Split on Friday in California

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Whitworth split a pair of volleyball matches on Friday at the Cal-Lu-Fornia Invitational tournament.  The Pirates swept Pomona-Pitzer but fell to host Cal Lutheran in four sets.

Whitworth is now 3-3 this season and the Bucs will conclude the tournament on Saturday with contests against Whittier College and Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges.

Cassandra Mendoza had 24 kills on Friday for the Pirates, while Taylor Wicht dug 38 balls.

Match 1 – Whitworth 3, Pomona-Pitzer 0 (25-21, 25-22, 25-20)
Madison Douglas hammered 12 kills and hit .500 to lead the Pirates to a sweep of the Sagehens (1-5) on Friday afternoon.

Mendoza added nine kills and Lauren Budde finished with seven kills.  Gracie Meiners directed the attack with 32 assists as Whitworth hit .190 as a team and held the Sagehens to .060.

The Pirates trailed only one time in the entire contest, when Pomona-Pitzer took a 1-0 lead in the third set.  Otherwise Whitworth held a lead and controlled the action from the opening serve. 

Match 2 – Cal Lutheran 3, Whitworth 1 (25-12, 25-21, 17-25, 25-22)
It looked like the 11th-ranked Regals might run away from the Pirates after they dominated the first set, but Whitworth responded and nearly pushed Cal Lutheran to a fifth frame.

Mendoza led the rally with 15 kills while Emiko Kahler totaled 11 kills and 12 digs.  Meiners dished 42 assists. 

After the Pirates struggled to a -.032 hitting percentage in the opening set, Whitworth rebounded with a .344 hitting percentage in the second set, but fell short after rallying from an 18-11 deficit to within 22-21.  Whitworth carried that momentum into the third set, winning on a kill by Douglas after leading frm the opening serve. 

The Bucs had a chance to force a fifth set after leading 14-12 on a kill by Corinne Bell.  But CLU used a 10-4 run to go up 22-18. 

The Regals improved to 4-3 after sweeping UC Santa Cruz earlier in the day.