Volleyball Takes Pride
September 28, 2013
SANTA CLARITA, Calif. – In its third Golden State Athletic Conference match of the season, The Master’s College volleyball team was tasked to top 17th-ranked Vanguard.
At the end of five strenuous sets, TMC, which ranks No. 21 in the most recent NAIA Top 25 Poll, bested the Lions 3-2, raising its overall record to 12-3 (2-1 GSAC).
“Hats off to Vanguard,” commented head coach Bobby Blanken. “They did a great job tonight. They’ve improved since the first part of the season and it was nice to see two well-balanced teams competing.”
Setting the tone for the night, set one was a battle as the score was brought to a tie on five separate occasions (1-1, 3-3, 6-6, 9-9, 10-10). A Vanguard attack error put TMC up 11-10 and propelled the Lady Mustangs to a 25-15 set one victory.
TMC dropped the next two sets in nail-biting fashion (20-25, 28-26), forcing the Lady Mustangs to face an intimidating 2-1 deficit.
Besides a handful of early ties (1-1, 2-2, 3-3), the Lady Mustangs entered the fourth set unfazed. TMC controlled the set after breaking the 3-3 tie and posted a final score of 25-17. With the set win, the Lady Mustangs evaded their first home loss of the year.
In the fifth frame, TMC broke a 6-6 tie and posted a 9-3 run, ultimately bringing the final score to 15-9, and icing the match at 3-2.
“The girls played phenomenally well,” further assessed Blanken. “They responded well to errors and missed calls.”
Sam Dougherty (Madera, CA) led all scorers with 27 kills while Aubery Bekendam (Orland, CA) notched 37 assists. Rebecca Peluffo (La Crescenta, CA) tallied a team-high 19 digs while Bekendam followed added 14 more, and Dougherty had 12.
Olivia Gwinn (Santa Clarita, CA), who posted three digs, made an impact on Blanken, causing the fourth-year head coach to assess the junior’s efforts by saying, “Olivia [Gwinn] had 21 opportunities to serve and did a phenomenal job of keeping Vanguard out of their system. Her hard work is really paying off.”
Looking ahead, TMC will travel to No. 10 Westmont (14-2, 2-1 GSAC) on Tuesday, October 1, for a 7:00 p.m. match.
“They [Westmont] are tenacious on defense,” commented Blanken. “It’s imperative to not make errors. Westmont is a very good team and I’m looking forward to seeing how our girls will perform.”