Riverside, Calif. - The women's volleyball team settled for a split this weekend against the top two teams in the Cal Pac standings. On Friday afternoon, the Golden Eagles lost 3-1 (25-18, 28-30, 17-25, 22-25) to first-place Embry-Riddle University. They rebounded to defeat second-place Benedictine University, 3-1 (25-16, 25-17, 22-25, 25-18). The win pushed La Sierra's record to 8-4 in Cal Pac play (12-10 overall). They remain in a tie for third-place with UC Merced who defeated Pacific Union in five sets.
In the first match of the weekend the Golden Eagles missed out on an opportunity to knock off Embry-Riddle who sit atop the conference standings. After taking the first set in convincing fashion, the Golden Eagles squandered a lead in the second set and were unable to close it out as Embry-Riddle came back to steal the set and even the match at 1-1. They went on to carry that momentum into Sets 3 and 4 on their way to victory.
The stat leaders in Friday's match were Briana Greeley who led the Golden Eagles with 14 kills in the match. Kiana Krumm and Taylor Moran each added 12 kills of their own, with Michele Mendizabal contributing 10 kills.
La Sierra also had five players who finished in double-figures in digs. Emily Morgan led the team with 25 digs, while Krumm tallied 15 digs. Setter Smriti Sharma had 12 digs, while Daniela Alvarez and Marissa Fregoso each finished with 11 digs apiece.
On the other side of the net, the Golden Eagles were unable to slow the attack of Jalin Yoder who led all players with 20 kills on 69 attempts and only five hitting errors in the match.
The Golden Eagles rebounded nicely with a rather convincing win on Saturday night against the Redhawks from Benedictine University – Mesa.
Mendizabal had a strong showing with 18 kills on 38 attempts and six errors, for a hitting percentage of .316. Krumm added another 16 kills on 50 total attempts in the win.
Prior to the match the team recognized their lone senior on this year's squad, Taylor Moran, who had 14 kills on 40 attempts and only one error for a team-high .325 hitting percentage.
Morgan had 39 digs to lead the team, with Krumm adding 18 digs and Alvarez pitching in with 10 digs of her own.
Fregoso and Sharma guided the offense while collecting 27 assists and 17 assists, respectively.
The Golden Eagles won the battle at the net by out-blocking the Redhawks, 8-6.
Needless to say, Thursday's match at the University of California – Merced will help determine the final seeding's for the upcoming Cal Pac Championship Tournament, which will be hosted at La Sierra University. With Embry-Riddle's two wins this weekend and Benedictine's loss last night, the Eagles secured their second straight regular season Cal Pac championship.
The Golden Eagles and Bobcats each have two conference matches remaining, while Benedictine will play their final conference match on Saturday night at Embry-Riddle. By next Saturday night, seeds 2-4 will be determined and the Cal Pac Tournament schedule will be set.