Lions Edge Lady Mustangs in Five-Set Thriller

September 22, 2015 

Box Score:

SANTA CLARITA, Calif.  – After fighting through five close sets (26-24, 25-17, 23-25, 23-25, 14-16), the 25th-ranked Master’s College volleyball team fell to the 10th-ranked Vanguard Lions Tuesday night at Boss Court.

The loss moved TMC’s impressive 2015 record to 11-6 overall and 4-1 in GSAC play.  Notably, it was the first time all season that the Lady Mustangs had fallen to a top 25 program as TMC was 3-0 against nationally ranked opponents heading into Tuesday’s match. 

Half way through the third set, it seemed as if TMC would sweep the Lions as the Lady Mustangs had notched the first two sets in close, but commanding fashion (26-24, 25-17).  Despite the two teams trading blows in the waning moments of the third frame, the Lions clawed their way to victory after notching a 25-23 win.

TMC faced an uphill battle in the fourth frame as the Lady Mustangs trailed the Lions for the majority of the set. However, TMC fought through a seven-point deficit (10-17) and later managed to tie the set at 22-22 with a kill from Aubrey Pyburn (Orland, CA).  The Lions outlasted TMC again by taking the frame with a 25-23 win.

The highlight of the evening came in game five shortly after the Lions raced out to a 7-0 lead.  However, stellar play on part of TMC’s offense brought the score to 10-13 in favor of the Lions. Moments later, a Vanguard attack error tied the match at 14-14. Unfortunately, a kill from VU’s Chalotte Herelyn coupled with an untimely TMC attack error put the match on ice. 

Britney Jones (Northridge, CA) posted an evening-high 12 kills, while Jessie Rodgriguez (Castaic, CA) and Aubrey Pyburn (Sun Valley, CA) tallied 11. Bekendam finished the night with 43 assists and 16 digs. Collectively, TMC claimed 63 digs, 61 kills, and 57 assists. 

“TMC volleyball was on full display tonight,” commented head coach Allan Vince. “We executed our game plan flawlessly in the first two sets and set the tone to win. Vanguard responded in game three with a change in its game plan, but we adapted too late to stop their momentum. I am very pleased with how our girls battled tonight, and we’ll use these lessons to strengthen our game against Biola this Saturday.”

Things don’t get any easier for the Lady Mustangs as their next match is on Saturday at Biola University, the nation’s top-ranked team.  After Saturday’s showdown, TMC will return home to Bross Court where it will host No. 16 Westmont College. Both matches are set to start at 7:00 p.m.