The women’s volleyball team entered last week’s competition 4-4 and maintained their .500 win percentage, splitting matches against Utah State and Idaho over the weekend.
UCI 3, UTSU 1
With a 3-1 win over Utah State on Friday evening, Shannon Fleming, Arielle Manz and Marisa Bubica recorded career-highs in kills with 12, 12 and 13 respectively. Mary Carls also hada personal best, 51 assists.
UCI had a strong start in the first match as they led 12-7, but a 6-point streak for Utah put the Aggies ahead 13-12. UCI took a timeout while trailing 19-18. The ’Eaters responded well and retook the lead at 22-21. Unable to maintain the lead, an Irvine net violation gave Utah the advantage at 23-22 and back-to-back kills for the Aggies ended the set at 25-23.
Utah took an early 7-5 lead in the second set, but a kill by Fleming tied the match at eight. After a 14-14 standstill, UCI went ahead with a three-point streak and brought the score to 17-14. Holding on to the lead, Manz ended the set for UCI with a kill for a final score of 25-20 to tie the match at one set apiece.
A block by Squires opened the third set with a 1-0 lead, and the ’Eaters never looked back. Unstoppable with a 19-6 spread, UCI knocked down 15 kills with no errors and ended the set at 25-10.
The ’Eaters continued to command the fourth set with a 16-9 lead and Fleming ended the match with a solo block at 25-17 for the victory.
Coach Bodipo-Memba is content with the team’s progression.
“We want to improve two percent every day,” Bodipo-Memba said. “We figure if we improve two percent everyday, then we’re going to be a very good team at the end of the year. Playing for each other, playing for the right reasons, and enjoying the process.”
Junior Kristin Winkler names unity as the element that sets UCI apart from other teams.
“We’re all on the same level, same energy, and we work together really well,” Winkler said.
UCI 0, IU 3
The following night against Idaho at Crawford Court, the Vandals took three straight sets from the ’Eaters.
After trading points in the first set, an Idaho kill put the Vandals ahead at 15-14. Capitalizing on the lead, the Vandals went ahead by six at 20-14 and stretched the lead to seven at 22-15. The Vandals took the first set on a UCI attacking error, ending at 25-20.
The ’Eaters were unable to take the lead in the third set as Idaho distanced themselves from an 8-8 standstill to a four-point lead at 15-11.
Three kills in a row for the ’Eaters by Manz, Bubica and Acres brought UCI to within a point of the Vandals at 15-14. An Idaho ace put them up 23-19 and the Vandals were able to hold on for a 25-21 victory.
A kill by Manz in the fourth set gave the ’Eaters an early lead at 2-1 until Idaho answered with a kill for a 3-3 tie.
Hauser’s kill made it even at 14, but the ’Eaters would not see the lead again. The Vandals went on to win the third and final set, 25-22.