The opening night of West Coast Conference action featured the top team in the country in BYU. The Cougars weren’t the only undefeated team left in the WCC though, as Portland was also unblemished. However, just one of the two emerged victorious on the night in a long list of results.
WCC Roundup: Sep. 20, 2018
#1 BYU DEF. PACIFIC 3-0 (25-12, 25-20, 25-14)
- #1 BYU improves to 11-0 (1-0 WCC); Pacific falls to 5-7 (0-1 WCC)
- Provo, Utah
- Attendance: 2,210
- Box Score
- BYU Release | Pacific Release
The Cougars will have a target on their back throughout WCC play, as each opponent will try to be the first to knock them off. They fended off their first opponent though behind a dominant offensive performance in hitting .507. The individual performances reflected it as well, led by Roni Jones-Perry (13 kills, .765, 4 digs, 3 blocks, 3 aces), McKenna Miller (11 kills, .688, 3 blocks) and Lyndie Haddock-Eppich (35 assists, 5 digs).
Beyond just the attack, the block provided a thump for BYU as well. They out-blocked the opposition 9-2. They also won the battle of aces 8-3. Pacific wasn’t too bad on offense, as they hit .184 and were led by Riley Ramsey (7 kills, .500). BYU wound up with just 19 digs, but that was mainly a product of how spectacular their offense was.
- BYU hosts Saint Mary’s on Saturday afternoon
- Pacific stays on the road to take on (RV) San Diego
PEPPERDINE DEF. (RV) PORTLAND 3-0 (25-22, 25-21, 25-19)
- Pepperdine improves to 7-4 (1-0 WCC); Portland falls to 12-1 (0-1 WCC)
- Portland, Oregon
- Attendance: 543
- Box Score
- Pepperdine Release | Portland Release
The Waves earned a big upset to open up WCC action, even doing so on the road and in sweep fashion. It’s the first loss of the season for Portland, who was creeping up right on the VolleyMob Top 25, while Pepperdine had some impressive performances in the non-conference and show that they are a force in the league as well.
In total, Pepperdine out-hit Portland .240-.124 and had more blocks (9-5). Liz Reich (11 kills, .280) and Cali Thompson (29 assists, 6 digs) put up a good fight for the Pilots to stay unbeaten, but Rachel Ahrens (14 kills, .520, 5 blocks), Hannah Frohling (13 kills, .393) and Blossom Sato (33 assists, 11 digs) were too much.
SAINT MARY’S DEF. (RV) SAN DIEGO 3-2 (25-22, 20-25, 22-25, 25-20, 16-14)
- Saint Mary’s improves to 9-2 (1-0 WCC); (RV) San Diego falls to 3-7 (0-1 WCC)
- San Diego, California
- Attendance: 294
- Box Score
- Saint Mary’s Release | San Diego Release
More proof that the WCC is going to be really deep this season. It’s also further proof that Saint Mary’s hot start and win at Utah wasn’t a fluke, while San Diego continues to be troubled and will really have to turn things around if they want to be an NCAA Tournament team in 2018. The win also gives the Gaels their eighth in a row, while it’s the second consecutive five-set loss for the Toreros.
What a match it was though, as both teams went back-and-forth. That happened again in the fifth, when San Diego came back on Saint Mary’s to go up 9-7 but couldn’t hold the lead. Both teams hit .249 and blocking went SMC’s way (12-10). The serving game was much different, as the Gaels had eight more serve errors but also seven more aces, as the aggressiveness paid off.
Jumping off the page statistically for Saint Mary’s were Lindsey Calvin (17 kills, .227), Sienna Young (16 kills, .333, 10 digs), Lindsey Knudsen (13 kills, .333, 14 digs) and Emily Bible (17 digs, 3 aces). In the losing effort for San Diego, Roxie Wiblin (20 kills, .279, 12 digs), Megan Jacobsen (13 kills, .417), Lauren Fuller (12 kills, .143, 11 digs) and Addie Picha (10 kills, .444, 5 blocks) stood out.
- Saint Mary’s travels to Provo to really get a stern test in playing at #1 BYU
- San Diego looks to regroup at home on Saturday against Pacific
GONZAGA DEF. LOYOLA MARYMOUNT 3-0 (25-21, 25-18, 25-21)
- Gonzaga improves to 4-8 (1-0 WCC); Loyola Marymount drops to 10-2 (0-1 WCC)
- Spokane, Washington
- Attendance: 702
- Box Score
- Gonzaga Release | Loyola Marymount Release
The Bulldogs played a difficult non-conference slate, so their record isn’t exactly indicative of how solid they are. Still, this one was a bit of an upset after Loyola Marymount won 10 of their opening 11 matches – including over Auburn, Kansas and a UTRGV team that upset Baylor – with their lone loss to Cal Poly.
Gonzaga’s effort was spearheaded by their offense that hit .297 and was led by Kaylie Loewen (14 kills, .400) and Sarah Penner (8 kills, .286, 4 digs, 3 blocks). Loyola Marymount wound up with four more attack errors and eight more service errors, as they fell short despite the efforts from Sara Kovac (11 kills, .212), Tess Reid (34 assists, 8 digs, 5 kills, .714) and Kekai Whitford (19 digs).
- Gonzaga stays at home to host Pepperdine
- Loyola Marymount will continue in the Pacific northwest for a road tilt at (RV) Portland
SAN FRANCISCO DEF. SANTA CLARA 3-0 (25-22, 25-16, 25-15)
- San Francisco improves to 8-4 (1-0 WCC); Santa Clara falls to 5-8 (0-1 WCC)
- San Francisco, California
- Attendance: 167
- Box Score
- San Francisco Release | Santa Clara Release
In a meeting of a couple of teams from northern California, San Francisco earned a sweep of Santa Clara. It was all about balance for USF, who hit.404 and had five players at five or more kills. Kathya Garcia (10 kills, .320, 8 digs), Emily Zinger (9 kills, .471, 3 blocks) and Kate Ashman (8 kills, .583, 7 blocks) had the most, but the defense was also strong with a 9-4 edge in blocks. Tessie Powers (26 assists, 10 digs) had a double-double for SCU.
- San Francisco doesn’t travel too far but takes on Saint Mary’s on the road
- Santa Clara faces Pacific on the road