Regals Survive Road Test from Whittier
WHITTIER, Calif. - Dropping the first set of Tuesday night's match at Whittier 22-25, No. 14 Cal Lutheran battled back to extend its win streak against the Poets to 16 matches by taking three of the next four by scores of 25-19, 25-22, 23-25, and 15-12.
Box Score: CLU 3, WC 2 - F
The win is Cal Lutheran's third five-set victory of the season.
Losing a set to Whittier for only the third time in the last seven years, Cal Lutheran responded by leading the second set from start to finish, tying the match at 1-1.
The Regals nearly led throughout the entire third set as well; allowing Whittier to score the first point of the fourth set, Cal Lutheran would earn the lead for good just two points later to earn its first lead of the match at 2-1.
Winning eight of the last nine points in the fourth set, Whittier was able to erase a four point Cal Lutheran lead to tie the match at two apiece and force a decisive fifth set.
As was the case in their other two five-set contests, the Regals simply overpowered the Poets early in the set to build another four point advantage - one the team simply refused to relinquish en route to an eventual 15-12 set victory.
Breaking her previous season-high of 53 assists earned against Occidental two weeks ago, junior setter Jackie Russell finished Tuesday's match earning 60 of Cal Lutheran's 63 assists.
Also setting a new season high with 19 kills was junior middle blocker Shannon Pearson, breaking her previous mark of 16 originally set at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 11 days ago.
Cal Lutheran (14-4, 7-0 SCIAC) will begin its six-match homestand this Friday against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (9-7, 4-2 SCIAC). That match against the Athenas will begin at 7 p.m.